Update: The update is now live in the Store – find it by hitting the widget at the end of the post.
Last month, Google announced they'd be killing off Google Reader this July. Yes, in just a couple of short months, one of the most beloved RSS resources in existence would be kaput. Google says it decided to pull the plug because of dwindling use numbers. While there were plenty of discussions about Google's real motivation (everything from well-reasoned examinations of the situation to cries of "EVIL!"), there was something more important happening behind the outcry – there were people stepping up to fill the gap in as seamless and timely a fashion as possible.
Did you hear about Google's sweet new app called Keep? After five years of Android existing without a basic note-taking app like iOS had for forever, Google finally got around to creating its own. Oh, and it even added a to-do list and picture uploading and voice memos and-wait, what's that? You don't want to use it because Google Reader closed? I'm not sure I follow.
I'm an open-minded kind of guy, though. I believe that problems can be solved by talking them out. And it's not like I'm not sensitive to your feelings. After all, I used Google Reader, too.
"We're living in a new kind of computing environment," says Urs Hölzle, SVP Technical Infrastructure and Google Fellow in a new post to Google's official blog. The search giant has resolved to make a second sweep at spring cleaning that began two years ago. After this round of cleaning is complete, the total number of features and services Google will have closed will number 70.
In the post, Google announces the closure or deprecation of eight features and services, but buried four items deep is the one that will probably affect the most users: Google Reader.
The New York Times, old guard or not, is still a huge source of news to a lot of people and to the company's credit, it's paying a decent amount of attention to its mobile apps. Now the publication is issuing an update that brings a night mode that inverts the colors for easier night reading. As someone who likes to minimize the amount of bright white light blasting into my eyes, I appreciate the option.
Additionally, the company is adding a customizable widget that, frankly, gets nearly everything right: it's resizable, you can customize which categories show up in the feed, and there is an easy button to change the widget settings if you should so choose.
As a tech writer, I read a lot of RSS feeds. Hundreds, maybe more. All day, every day. It's one of the first things I check every morning, and the last before bed. And dozens of times throughout the day. When I first started as a writer, Google Reader was my go-to RSS reader, both on my PCs and mobile. It didn't take long to realize GR's shortcomings on both platforms, however. So, after a little convincing from Artem, I switched to FeedDemon on my computers. It's a fantastic application and has increased my ability to find good, relevant content by at least 10 fold.
Well folks, it's finally (officially) here. Since it was yanked from the S3 (and put through a beta period), Android users have been anticipating the "Social Magazine" which has already seen great success on iOS. The app, which is billed as "the one thing to simplify your daily life," hit the Play Store tonight, bringing a social news reader with an innovative user interface to Android users everywhere.
For those unfamiliar with Flipboard, the app allows users to not only read news related to their favorite topics, but to share what they're reading and "be amazed by what [they] see when everything people are sharing, collecting, and publishing in every moment comes together in a single place." Users can connect Flipboard to 12 social networks ranging from Twitter and Facebook to Instagram, Google+, YouTube, Google Reader, and more.
If you've been waiting around for Readability to hit the Play Store, you've probably noticed that it's, well, not there. There's actually no word when it will land in the Store, but it's already available in the Amazon Appstore if you'd rather not wait.
Update: Now it's available in the store here. Widget added below.
While the desktop world races to create the world's most powerful browser, and even browser-based OSes, the mobile world moves towards simplicity. Stripped down article readers offer content-focused readers, stripped of page bloat, ads, and distracting sidebars. Readability, a gorgeous and until recently iOS-only content aggregator app is headed to Android on Monday, March 12th.
Looking to "help you catch up on technology news in minimal time and on your own schedule," Briox introduced Riversip to the Android Market recently. Riversip without a doubt provides a unique take on the "news reader" concept, automatically choosing news sources based on user-chosen topics, and showing only the top headlines, instead of clogging up your screen with every headline available.
Riversip also makes a point of its incredibly easy user experience, promising that "no setup or learning time [is] required." The app also allows users to see what other sources have reported on a given topic, providing a multitude of different angles for each headline.
One of the best cards (go ahead, sort them by rating) you can get for your mobile device is on sale today on Amazon as part of their daily Gold Box discount program. I'm talking about the 32GB Lexar Class 10 microSD card that comes with a handy reader that plugs right into a full-size USB port and reads your microSD cards like a champ.
The main reason I wanted to point out this sale was that I own this very card, which I bought from Amazon back in June of '11. Except, I bought it for $90.35, and even at that price didn't regret getting it one bit (though I am feeling just a little bitter today).
Google's dedicated RSS aggregator, simply called Reader, received an update today that brings full Honeycomb support, as well as a few minor improvements to the app. Added features include a new layout and an improved method of marking items as read, which consists of long pressing on the item.
The Honeycomb layout is a familiar one -- it shares the same look-and-feel as its desktop brother now. While the inclusion of a new Honeycomb interface is a much-needed one, I can honestly say the experience doesn't compare to that of the other RSS readers in the Market, namely Newsr.