Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

googlereadericon   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google ReaderAs mournfully described in verse by Justin, Google Reader has flown the coop. However, dear readers, this is not a time to cry. It is not a time to lament. It is not even a time to rise up in anger. Instead, it is a time for change.

RSS is a great tool for reading content all in one place, but is it possible that – gulp – there is something better out there? Perhaps you could collect content in a different way. Maybe you could get rid of RSS altogether and dive into a sea of entirely new waters! Could such a thing be true?

Below are just a few alternatives to Google Reader that bypass RSS and present reading material in clean, branded formats. Each one has a different fit, so check them all out and decide which ones are good for you.

Top Reads

topreads   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

Recently released by Readability, Top Reads is a website that aggregates content based on what the users of its sister service are looking at. It’s an entirely automated website based solely on numbers, but logically, it’s a no-brainer for Readability. All content is sampled from vast amounts of high quality reads, and for those of you who harken to the cleanliness of the ill-fated Google Reader, you can view all content in Readability’s paper-like format.

NewzSocial

newzsocial1   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

If you’re an iPad user, then you should definitely give NewzSocial a shot. In short, the app lets you create, follow, and share specific news streams based on whatever interests you.

Using a grid-based layout, NewzSocial allows you to select articles for reading from over 300 topics and about 14 categories, and all content is presented in a magazine-like format.

Reddit

reddit   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

The writers here on MakeUseOf are a motley crew, but one thing that brings us all together is our love for Reddit. You may have seen plenty of articles on here about this little content aggregation site, but if you haven’t checked it out for yourself, you really should. While the front page typically publishes an odd mix of of political rants and cat pictures, you can subscribe to individual interest-based subreddits which provide user-generated links to interesting material.

On another note, if you have heard a few bad things about Reddit, you should give it a second shot. It’s probably not as corrupted as you think.

Buzzego

buzzego   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

Buzzego is weird, but I like it. From the get-go, you choose the type of content you want to read based on a given set of categories. However, on Buzzego, you don’t call categories “categories”. Instead, you call them “pandas”, and yes, each category is represented by a 3D modeled panda that has a striking resemblance to Po from the acclaimed Dreamworks animated kung-fu film.

Surprisingly effective, Buzzego routes content to you in a sleek, non-distracting feed from various content sources on the web. In all truth, it does exactly what other sites do, but it has one thing other sites don’t: pandas.

Fireplug

FirePlug1   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

FirePlug is a great mobile app that is quite similar to NewzSocial. By collecting news content from publications Internet-wide, you can have all the daily information you need right in your pocket. Even better, FirePlug connects to your Facebook, and it’s not for the same social reasons other apps may have. Instead, it republishes content from your feed, so you can merge your local and public news all in one place.

FlipBoard

flipboard1   Swim In The Sea of RSS: Curated Content Alternatives To Google Reader

As mentioned on MakeUseOf before, FlipBoard is an app that creates your own personal magazine filled with content curated by you. As you browse the web, you select articles to be added to the virtual magazine. When you finally sit down with the app, all of your reading material is consolidated into one place and in a fancy, aesthetically-pleasing layout. If you haven’t tried FlipBoard out, give it a go.

Conclusion

You may very well be a hardcore RSS fan, and that’s fine. Go for it. Enjoy it. I’m not going to bash you at all. However, the above services and apps provide some pretty amazing uses, and I think it would definitely be worth trying them out. In the mean time, we’d like to hear what you think.

What other alternatives to Google Reader do you know about that we should be using? Do you believe the above services an items are top-notch products?

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9 Comments -

Tim

Zite and AOL Editions are two excellent curated news apps; I haven’t seen you mention Taptu, Pulse, or Flud as iOS apps that have been around for a little while and allow you to subscribe to RSS feeds without Google Reader. All of them have curated lists of feeds but also allow you to subscribe to feeds as long as they can validate the feed.

Joshua Lockhart

Great additions, Tim. Thanks.

Sameer

Google Currents is a good alternative as well. In addition to a consistent look for all sources, it also allows you to subscribe to the RSS feeds…best of both worlds maybe…

Nevzat A

What about Feedly’s own app?

Mitzumi Kare

I have been using Prismatic and tried Zite [the latter was REALLY buggy] and wish there was a Prismatic app for android. I like reading my feeds in feedly but I like finding news as well. Some of the blogs I follow don’t update enough and I need to kill time.

Curt Schroeder

For tech news, Daily Rotation (http://www.dailyrotation.com/) is my favorite and it has both desktop and mobile formats.

willrun4fun

Digg.com has been a good source lately for what is trending in various topics.

Deshaun Wilkins

Thx for this article. To me its really critical which kind of rss provider is best. I tried a lot of them and i can only recommend feedly as much as i can. Especially the design and shortcuts are useful……

Lisa Santika Onggrid

Topreads is interesting. I go to longreads if I have spare time. It’s also a website affiliated with Readibility, but curates long articles from various sources in the net. Most of the articles collected will worth your time.