I Need a Good RSS Reader

Eclipse, Tools, Windows

I have been using the FeedDemon RSS Reader from the past 29 days and the trial version will expire in a day. I am definitely not going to shell out 30$ for the full version. The reader has all the features that I need, but there is nothing special in it, for me to buy it.

So I went on a hunt of finding a free desktop based RSS reader. Before trying out FeedDemon, I had tried these applications/RSS readers.

1. Firefox Live Bookmarks – Easy to add the feed, but doesn’t it bloat your toolbar or what ?

2. Sage RSS Reader – Sage is a lightweight RSS and Atom feed reader extension for Mozilla Firefox. But again I was not comfortable using a reader within the browser, the browser as such is already bloated with lot of tabs and toolbars !

3. Microsoft Outlook RSS Reader – Outlook 2007 has in-built support to subscribe for RSS feeds. Its easy to use and I am currently using it at my workplace. However I am not comfortable using the same at home, since I just don’t want to open a “big” application like outlook just to read RSS feeds. It does have a very big memory footprint.

4. Google Reader , Bloglines and NewsGator – I somehow have a aversion for online RSS readers. The good thing about online RSS reader is that you can maintain one centralized place for all your feeds, however the bad thing is that it doesn’t allow you to read the feeds offline !

Google Reader for one, is one of the most unusable application from Google. When I started subscribing/reading more and more feeds, I just couldn’t handle it with Google Reader.

Currently I am trying out RSS Bandit and RSS Owl. RSS Owl demonstrates the power of Eclipse. Its an RCP application built on Eclipse. Again I am not too happy with these 2 readers as well !! The number of options available from the toolbar and menu just makes me dizzy !!

I want an RSS Reader

  • Which has a simple User Interface (No bloated toolbars and menus)
  • Easy Navigability (Including keyboard shortcuts) and Search
  • Not in-built into any web browser

Can anyone recommend me a good desktop based RSS reader for Windows ?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Vasuki Aug 22, 2006 Link

    We are in the same boat I guess!
    I struggled to find a decent RSS reader and now I have settled for Opera’s in-built RSS reader.
    I found Google Reader to be the most inelegant of them. I dont have strong preference for either an online or an offline reader. But, if it is an offline one, there should be a way to import/export the feed list, since we might be using different machines. (fortunately Opera has that)
    But, I need some reader where I can group my feeds – like blogs, tech, news etc. (which opera does not have) and of course good keybaord shortcuts for all the actions. And I should be able to add a label to the article (Important, TODO etc) and all the feeds should be searcheable.

    Is there any?

  • venukb Aug 22, 2006 Link

    RSS Owl seems to suffice some of the requirements. You can import/export OPML files and yes you can categorize your feeds as well and there are keyboard shortcuts for important operations.

    But still I am not happy with the UI, I am not able to place the reading pane the way I want, which is pretty annoying.

    Feedemon is pretty good and probably the reason why its also not free 🙁

  • Ryan Aug 23, 2006 Link

    I always used Safari’s built in and Firefox’s built in but I wanted to sync it them between work and home so I have been forced to retreat to an online RSS reader. I’ve been using Google Reader, but if someone has a better suggestion I would easily jump ship. There are a few things about Google Reader that I’m not a big fan 🙂

  • Venu Aug 23, 2006 Link

    Bloglines is supposed to be one of the favorite apps in the Online RSS reader space..Try it.. I guess for Mac Newsfire is the defacto standard right.. ?

  • Shivaranjan Aug 25, 2006 Link

    I recently switched to a rss reader called Feedreader from opera’s rss reader. I have blogged about it here. You can give it a try. and let me know. 🙂

  • Venu Aug 25, 2006 Link

    Thanks Shiv, I am trying the application now, The UI looks pretty similar to FeedDemon.

    Now I guess the only feature which I need to pay to Feeddemon is for the the sych it does with newsgator, I am sure I dont want it as of now..

  • Pooran Aug 28, 2006 Link

    Try Sharpreader http://www.sharpreader.com/

  • Venu Aug 29, 2006 Link

    will definitely give it a try.. kind of liking the feedreader recommended by shiv, let me see if sharpreader scales up to feed reader 🙂

  • Kyle Eslick Aug 29, 2006 Link

    Hi Venu!

    I certainly recommend GreatNews for all my feed reading needs. I’ve had luck with a few others, including Sharpreader, RSS Bandit, and Abilon.

    I will be reviewing all four on my website over the coming week.

    Great website btw!

  • Venu Aug 29, 2006 Link

    Kyle, Thanks for the feedback.

    I am checking on the different RSS readers including GreatNews, and will surely come out with what I have finally settled to 🙂

  • Anand Aug 31, 2006 Link

    I have recently tried using Newshutch and I must say it’s pretty slick with quick keyboard shortcuts and a great UI.

  • Venu Aug 31, 2006 Link

    Hi ananad, i guess its a web based rss reader, which i want to avoid.
    I checked it, the ajaxfication makes the user interface pretty easy to use… liked it better than Bloglines, newsgator and google rss reader..

  • codecraig Nov 28, 2006 Link

    check out GreatNews RSS Reader