Google Reader Is Dead: What Do You Think About It? [MakeUseOf Poll]

polls   Google Reader Is Dead: What Do You Think About It? [MakeUseOf Poll]Last week we asked you what you think of the new SimCity game and its problematic launch. Despite the generally good reviews the game has received prior to launch, the buggy launch and forced online play seems to lower the game’s appeal, at least for MakeUseOf readers.

Out of 259 votes in total, the votes were divided as follows: 3.5% played the game but don’t think it’s anything special, another 3.5% bought the game but couldn’t manage to play properly, 11% played the game and think it’s awesome, 19% want to buy it but haven’t don’t so yet, 34% love SimCity but will not buy the game at its current price/conditions, and 29% of the readers who voted are not interested in the game at all.

Full results and this week’s poll after the jump.

Don’t forget to check out last week’s best comment by Pedro Moreira, who won 150 reward points for sharing his thoughts!

poll results march 16   Google Reader Is Dead: What Do You Think About It? [MakeUseOf Poll]

This week’s poll question is: Google Reader Is Dead: What Do You Think About It?

Want to make some extra MakeUseOf reward points? The most useful comment on the poll will be awarded 150 points!

This week’s poll question is the obvious one considering the week’s biggest news: the end of Google Reader. Despite Google’s claim that Reader’s usage was declining, the uproar that followed the announcement seems to point otherwise. Are you a Google Reader user, or do you use a different RSS reader that doesn’t rely on Google’s product? Do you understand Google’s decision, or do you think it’s a huge mistake? How do you think this decision will affect RSS services? Tell us what you think of Google’s most controversial decision in quite a while.

Don’t forget to tell us in the comments why shutting down Google Reader is good or bad, and of course, share some good alternatives, if you have any!

The comments were closed because the article is more than 180 days old.

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63 Comments -

kajehart

I’ve been using Google Reader for years. Considering Google has no problem opening up Google+ accounts for every Gmail sign-up, there has to be a way to effectively integrate the one-line feed layout into Google+. All smart companies, from brick-and-mortar to tech, have at least one lost leader, in order to sell their other services. Tying RSS feeds to Google+ would allow easy sharing and likely increase (at least somewhat) the stickiness of G+. I have tried about a dozen alternatives, and have been unhappy with either layout, functionality, feed updating, server latency, memory consumption (clients), or the unknown likelihood of updates. Looks like I will be waiting to see what happens with developers in the next three months.

Réy Aétar

They created it and they have complete right to choose what to do with it ..
but problem is when users suffers
last time they killed the active sync service and it created a mess and before that i google and now google reader ..
if google wants dominance they cant rely only on their os rather they must keep providing their web services better than before
as still google products are un matched and few dont even have alternatives
and by stopping their mature services they are loosing their fans

susendeep dutta

I agree with you and this shows that they don’t care much about the users.

Dave Anderton

I agree. I didn’t use Google Reader, so that doesn’t affect me, but I was an avid fan of iGoogle. Instead of removing services in order to move to something else, if they don’t want to continue to support a service maybe they should have a legacy section so that people can still use the products they’ve come to love and have got used to. While I still use Gmail, I’ve now moved away from using Google products other than that, as I feel that I don’t know when they’re going to be taken away from me. I suspect that Google Reader users will start to do this more and more.

Réy Aétar

exactly hard to know whats google upto

Réy Aétar

still now i didnot get a good alternative and for the frst time am using those age old saved book marks

Lisa Santika Onggrid

Maintaining iGoogle and Google reader won’t cost them much money anyway. Their tendency to kill thriving services make me taking a step back from Google, one step at a time.

Rademaker

Bad decision, but I think it was a minor event in the bigger scheme of things. RSS is a great service that will be used for a long time regardless of Google’s backing.

Paul Parkinson LRPS

Having used Google Reader I am gutted about its pending demise. I guess I will be spending the next three months or so looking for a decent replacement. The OldReader looks like it could be on the money but I’m still waiting for my OPML to be imported (7,000 ahead of me at the time of writing so it may be a while).

Another issue is what I am going to do with my Reader Apps on my iPad – and yes *I know* it’s a first world problem – but I am pretty large consumer of RSS feeds and I like to keep on top of them.

The question is why couldn’t they absorb the functionality of Google Reader into Google+?

I’ve been looking for a proper reason to switch into Plus for a while – this could be it. Kill Reader? Okay – it’s your product, that’s understood, but give us something to replace it with. Because we will go somewhere else and spend less time in the GoogleVerse.

Wouldn’t Google prefer to know what we’re doing than not? They do now – but soon they won’t.

Kannon Yamada

It feels as if a close family member has some terminal illness. :-(

Tug R

What makes it worse is that it’s voluntary!

Alan Wade

Ive used Google Reader for the last couple of years and not only got used to it but loading it was part of a daily ritual.
I get home from work around 08:15, have a little breakfast and a cup of tea.
I fire up my computer, fill out my time sheet then go through the same routine daily.
1) Check Wincustomize for new icons, walls etc.
2) Check MUO for the latest questions, news etc.
3) Check Facebook to see whats happening in my home country.
4) Visit the other sites on my daily list.
5) Read all the news in Google Reader.

Now since the announcement that it will cease in July, I decided to change my RSS Reader to get used to a new one so to speak. I switched to Feedly after trying a couple of others that I am sure are great readers but just not what I was looking for.

The problem is it is hard to break my normal mouse click routine and click on Feedly instead of Google Reader. For that reason I will miss Google Reader, if only because of my routine.

lhamil64

I really don’t understand why Google is shutting it down. So many people still use it, and it can’t cost THAT much to keep a couple servers up. At least they should open-source it like they did with Wave.

1hegame

In my thinking they should keep running it as a Google Product and don’t open source it. As a part of Google it is giving us many features which open sourcing may not provide.

Rick Shortt

I agree with Paul, that Old Reader might be a good replacement. But, like him, I’m way back in line, about 6,000. I played around with NewsBlur and NetVibes and was not impressed. NewsBlur kept giving me error messages and NetVibes did not import all of my feeds. I have Feedly on my ipod, synched with Reader, and may give it a more careful look, but don’t really like the layout and functionality compared to Google Reader. Still, if Old Reader falls short, Feedly may grow on me.

This really sucks though! First Picasa Web Albums are being killed, which I am heavily tied to with nearly 550 albums and Google+ albums suck in comparison. Now Reader. As much as I like Google and have switched heavily to them or long relied on for many services – gmail, calendar, tasks, Drive, Music, search, Maps, Google Earth, News, Blogger, Chrome – most days I probably spend as much time, if not more, in Reader than all the rest combined, using it on my computer at home and work, as well as on my Android. (And synched with Feedly as mentioned above). Really hate to see it go and have to wonder which service of theirs I’m relying on heavily will be next to go if a few too many people stop using it.

1hegame

Google Reader Is Dead. Please don’t say that. I hope Google Reader fans will not let G. Reader go. Google is out of its mind I think. Who knows later it’ll say we are discontinuing Google Bookmarks and export them elsewhere and then it’ll say we are discontinuing Picasa because Google+ Photos can solve that purpose. Google should have killed Orkut instead (or Docs and Calendar as said by one user). This is a big mistake and Google should stop thinking about discontinuing it. And for the alternatives, I’m not going to recommend any because for me Google Reader has no replace. Netvibes’ GUI is awkward, FeedDemon creator has announced that he’s going to stop developing it further. RSSowl requires Java which I’ll don’t like to install, FeedNotifier is a tiny tool compared to G.Reader. You may give me any alternatives but Google Reader is just irreplaceable. I only liked Snarfer but it’s creator has also stop developing it a long time ago.

>>> Google: Keep Google Reader Running <<<

1hegame

Yeah I know that. That is why I said Google may kill Picasa Web Albums in future.

Max

Overall, I’m really mad. I use(d) google reader almost daily and am subscribed to over 50 feeds. I’ve been using feedly right now but it just doesn’t feel the same. Google reader WAS a great product, and google thinking it didn’t have enough users, or not enough features is BS in my opinion.

Tug R

I’m with you 100%. Feedly is alright, but there was a reason I didn’t opt to use it before; I liked the simplicity of Reader.

Daniel J. Karas

I think the problem was just under-promotion. Google comes out with so many good products, “One Simply Does NOT” have the time to evaluate them all. I only recently stumbled across Reader, and now its going away.

Istivan

I’m sad/angry at Google for messing this whole thing up. The way I see it the big G’s screwing up completely at social:

1. They had G Reader’s social aspect which they ignored and removed when they “updated” Reader to it’s current version;

2. Google Buzz, which I think was an excellent product was effectively killed in its infancy coz instead of gracefully adding it on top of G Reader & Gmail with in opt-in fashion, they shoved it on the users and created a backlash that was the undoing of a good product.

3. They’re doing the same wtih G+: it’s an ok product (much better than facebook, though with much less engagement) but they’re trying to force everyone to use it. How come those brilliant minds don’t learn the lesson?

Back to G Reader:

I use it daily to keep track of news, blogs and sites I read daily, the RSS of the class discussion in my masters programme, and even to keep track of the few Twitter users I follow.

The features I like are:

Keyboard navigation in the G Reader web site itself -> this is unbeatable (I tried a few other feed readers and they don’t have the same levels of Google’s keyboard navigation).

The ecosystem around it. I use vanilla G Reader on Chrome but read it on Android/iPad using Feedly. (Having the same app on both Android and iOS is a blessing: same interface, settings, etc.)

Reliability of the service.

Clean email-like interface with no crap.

Before the facelift last year, it was snappy. Now, with the new interface and the integration of G+ it’s much slower (though still OK).

So now I’ll probably stick to Feedly and use it on the browser anyway. Although I’m tempted to set up a self-hosted feed reader using feedafever.com. The problem with this would be Android/iOS. Haven’t investigated much so far. Am not-so-secretly hoping Google gets a change of heart (though that’s just wishful thinking on my part, but I’m still using G Reader for now).

In conclusion, it’s a bother that Google does this to us: they create the best feed reader around, kill off most of the competition simply by having the best product, and then go and kill it off. Makes one think twice on whether to keep using Google products. Though I doubt Gmail will ever disappear (or is that wishful thinking again?)

msterk

I moved on to uStart.org, which is a great replacement, but what I liked about Google reader, was having everything in one place, now I am forced to expand my basic links load. I can’t imagine why a company would have such a good grab of the RSS market, and let it go. The Ad Revenue had to pay for the service. On the flip side, its good for RSS providers, and it will keep RSS healthy. So good Riddance, I am one step closer to getting all my stuff off of the Google Amoeba.

Benji

I did use Google Reader before it was being killed and I thought it was a pretty good server. It was definitely the easiest RSS reader to use. I still don’t really mind its death because I have just found a even better feed reader(in my opinion). My new rss reader is FeedReader.

Benji

Whoops in the first sentence “server” is supposed to be rss reader.

Charity

Google has $$$ coming out the wazoo. They closed at well over 800 on Friday and they are saying that Google Reader costs too much to maintain? Or have I somehow transported to another planet or time or something without my knowledge? What the heck is wrong with them? And yet I find Google+ nearly useless. Google is too undependable a company. Next thing you know they’ll be shutting down Gmail.

Lisa Santika Onggrid

If they shut down Gmail, it’ll be the last nail on the coffin. No more Google for me.

Suzi Love

I’m very annoyed. Google has been pushing us to use all their services and we’ve done that. Then, one by one, they decide to cancel those same services eg Reader, Picasa. Wastes a lot of time having to switch when you are heavily into using something. Feedly’s usage isn’t as good or as easy as Reader.

Dick r.

I used notebook, they shut it down. I use igoogle, they are shutting it down. I use reader, they are shutting it down. Now I can’t trust them so I will delete my account and go back to desktop clients I can trust.

Maxi3w

I am gutted! Ok I use Feedly as my RSS Reader But….. All my feeds come directly from Google Reader. GR’s layout isn’t the best, despite the available tweaks out there, but I’ll be lost without Feedly… This is not good news :(

Maxi3w

Thank you. Just had a read of your link and am happy to see Feedly will live on!

Robert

I can’t rely on Google anymore.

Starria Turner

I have been using Google Reader for the past 2 years and from the start, I had a ton of feeds to follow once I figured it out- fashion, geek stuff like MUO and the Mary Sue, blogs of friends on tumblr who I didn’t want on my dash but wanted to keep up with them and webcomics and scantalation groups so I can get my comic/manga fix. I was actually going to set up following people on twitter with it and I had an IFTTT recipe set to send my starred items [like tutorials from art blogs] to Evernote. This has REALLY screwed up my workflow and I am really sad I haven’t had the chance to really test out it’s potential.

At the moment, I am stuck using two programs for my feeds right now: Feedly in Title View and Brief which is a firefox addon. They get the job done but not as well and are really tied to one browser. True I use one computer but there goes my ability to check my feeds on my phone [until I FINALLY get an android] and syncing between the two and also until either is made a channel in IFTTT I am going to have to go to the article I want to star and clip it with Evernote Webclipper. Too much time wasted.

Google is making me trust their products less and less with things either working less than stellar [Google Talk plugin hijacking my RAM, google chrome having freezing issues, YouTube won't letting me upload without acknowledging copyright, etc..] are disappearing one by one [Google Sites, Reader, iGoogle, Wave- which I really wanted to try]. I hate having all my services spread over a bunch of different websites but until things come together into one-hopefully free- service, I have no other choice.

P.S. I know it’s really ironic that I trust Google less but want an Android but it’s cheaper than iPhone and I can take it apart more without catching hell. =/

Saikat Basu

The thing with Google Reader was that Google has the capacity to handle millions of users without downtime and not charge a penny for it. Other companies might not have it, so expect to pay out for a good solution.

susendeep dutta

It now seems that it wants people to use Google+ and wants to grow in terms of money and popularity just like Facebook in very short period of time.

Nevzat A

I’ve switched to Feedly, but it’s slower than Google Reader. I miss it already :(

Scott M

I haven’t found anything that really replicates the services of Google Reader.I’ll use Feedly I guess.

Microm3gas

I have been a Google Reader user for what seems like ages. However I have also been a feedly user for 3+ years.

I liked both, and preferred Feedly for it’s Interface. I liked being able to view my trends and cull my feeds with Google Reader. I am sad to see it go, it is a service that I thought might be in trouble a few years ago, when I read how low RSS adoption was.

Relative to other users online, users that utilize RSS seem to be in the minority. It is now a very vocal minority, but I know that I am one of the only folks that make use of RSS withing my circle of friends. This is disappointing to me, but not unexpected.

Brendan Flattery

Personally I never used it, mainly because I’d rather see an integrated reader in Gmail. Or a more integrated Google+ environment.

Melissa

We need more, not fewer, reading tools!

Brian Smith1

Quelle domage. What a shame. I use Google Reader daily. Guess if this is a final decision by Google then I will have to find an alternative. I will try Feedly but winder if MUO has any other suggestions.

Emmet McKenna

I agree that Google need to continue to innovate and update their products and services but by being too cut throat current users will get fed up and stop using all google services as they won’t be sure which one is next for the chop!

null

It is one of the reasons I love google. Love being able to get my feeds in the same area I get my email, calendar, etc.

Jessica Lee

I love the Google reader because it was all inclusive with my Gmail, Calendar, Docs and all the other Google stuff I use. But with all the other the other readers out there it’s hard to compete.

Maybe they should have tried to streamline the reader app so that it has more competitive functionality.

fizzbin88

I have used Google Reader for ages now. I like the fact that it integrates well with my GMail and other Google Services. I don’t want it to go !

null

I don’t see anything in the article about Google Currents. I know the two are different apps, but they are essentially two sides of the same coin.

Yaara Lancet

Yes, they’re similar, but Currents is only for mobile, while Reader was a Web app which many made use of on their computer.

Harshit Jain

I never really liked Google Reader. I have just added lots of RSS feeds on Firefox toolbar and it much more convenient for me.

Corsz

I find Google Reader troublesome and not userfriendly and now I’m using Feedly after trying Feeddemon,wich I didn’t like to.Google needs to make changes to because the technical changes makes them to do. And if Google wants to make profits they have to

tolep

Adsense for feeds? Killed a few weeks ago.
Feedburner? About to terminate. API not available.
Google Reader? decided to kill by July.
RSS Subscription Extension for Chrome? removed from Chrome Web Store.

What is wrong with them? Why they hate RSS/Atom technology?

Roger Leatherwood

I think they don’t like it because you can bypass the ads placed on the sites to read the content directly in the reader.

Can’t believe they couldn’t solve this instead of just kicking everyone off.

R

Meena Bassem

Google reader is the most efficient reader i’ve ever seen. i’ve tried many other online services, and some desktop apps. but i really like the way it works. i’m subscribed to about 100 feeds and i get 100-200 new items daily. i like that i can access them from any browser, any desktop, windows or linux with my google account. i can star some items to read them later, mark the rest as unread and most of that with the keyboard shortcuts.
so far, i’ve tried feedly and the old reader, and i’m not really satisfied with either as much as google reader. still can’t find a good reason for what google is doing.
:(

Janice Halligan

For a company with huge PR problems, this seems to be a great way to increase animosity among potential users of other (future) Google offerings. I currently use Gmail, Google Reader and Google docs (aka newly christened Google Drive). With this ridiculous turn from Google, though I am reconsidering all of the above and will be searching out alternatives as soon as I have free time to do so. Way to lose another user, Google… you rock at this!

Paul Winn

I really like Google reader due to the simplicity of it! My wife and I will be sad to see it go. Although I don’t know the actual usage statistics for reader, I find it odd that Google would nix this service. It seems that too often large companies make these decisions based solely on numbers. Google reader is a solid service and regardless of declining usage it remains a solid service. As in any company, having solid products creates value for the whole brand. Like Gmail, Google reader is an important ingredient that makes up a quality mix. Killing off Google Reader will just add mistrust for the brand. I’m all in with Google but if they continue to kill of services like Reader, I’ll find it hard to put my eggs in their basket!

cimbrum

I’m using Google Reader everyday, while commuting… I can’t believe Google will stop it!

david

Having discovered Google reader late in its product life I am extriemly sorry to see it closing. While it isn’t the only reader of its type the fact that it could be found within the Google family made using it easier.
I feel; it would have gained more popularity if Google had highlighted its use. Most Google users don’t go past the search function to find Google doc, calender etc.

João Laranjeira

Bad decision from Google. I haved try Feedly and until now, it was a good surprise.

Aska Nag

Hi!
I don’t care I it is not used. To read RSS I use Feedreader.
Best regards!

Lisa Santika Onggrid

Frankly, I never like RSS Reader too much, opting to check my favorite sites’ page directly. It never takes too much time and I can choose what to read rather than having everything delivered.

Logicus

Killing Google Reader is a very bad and horrible decision for all of us who actully use if often. Google has lost a lot a trust which will be hard to regain. What is that point of using their services on a regular basis, uploading content, only to remove the service 2 years later ? Also, this kind of makes me question the wisdom of using the sky alltogether. Can we really entrust a third party to keep our data online and safe ?
I have to say that I nno longer think that is such a good idea. I don’t know about you but I’ve started using thunderbird for my mail instead of just using the web version of gmail, coupled with an account at outlook.com. I’m also considering putting up my own server with an rss reader and I’m definately off google drive from now on.
Who is to say when that get’s booted as well ?

michael chalk

Also very disappointed. Have been a strong advocate for google products & services, and used Reader *a lot*, but this is shaking my confidence in the company, and also making me re-think my investment in cloud-based software. (Investment of time that is.)

Reader, drive, gmail, android, chrome

michael chalk

..(hey who hit the post button, I wasn’t finished).

At least android & chromium are open source.. so we can continue to use and develop, when google gets bored & decides to put all their energy into space travel instead.