It’s common knowledge that Google is closing its Google Reader service, and that July 1st deadline is creeping ever closer. Now is the perfect time to switch to an alternative service and become acclimatised to a slightly different way of working, and the good news is that you can make the switch in minutes without having to perform any convoluted tricks, thanks to Feedly.com.
There are two ways to access Feedly – if you’re on a desktop or laptop, you’ll need to install the Feedly for Firefox, Chrome and Safari plug-in, and if you’ve an Android or iOS mobile, you’ll want to install Feedly 15.0.1 instead (or in addition to) in order to access the service.
Once that’s done, the hard part of migrating your feeds from Google Reader to Feedly is already over. It’s a simple case of browsing to feedly.com in your desktop web browser or opening the mobile app and signing in with your Google account – from here Feedly will seamlessly transfer all your feeds – including their organisational structure – across to its service.
One of the reasons Feedly does this so effortlessly is because until now it too relied on the Google Reader service, but with that on the way out it’s moved quickly to set up its own backend so its seven million users – three million of which have switched since Google first announced it was dumping Google Reader – will enjoy top-notch RSS aggregation come July 1st.
To keep things as simple as possible, Feedly has introduced a new basic list view for your aggregated feeds, to closely match the basic – but simple – approach of Google Reader. You don’t have to stick with that though, as it also provides three more enhanced views for browsing your folders, including one that provides a newspaper or magazine style multi-columned layout with photos, headlines and straplines.
Navigation is simple via the pop-out list from the left-hand side of the screen, and the mobile and web versions are designed to work in a similar way to make it easy to use Feedly across all your devices – yes, updating your feeds on one updates them on all. The web add-ins also provide a small bookmarklet that shows up in the bottom right-hand corner of screens making it easy to add new feeds, plus share stories via social media and mark them for reading later via Feedly’s own Saved for Later list.
Even if you don’t plan to stick with Feedly, switching now is a good idea to give you more breathing space after Google Reader closes its doors, but we reckon you might find it difficult to tear yourself away once you’ve worked out all its ins and outs.
Both Feedly for Firefox, Chrome and Safari, and Feedly 15.0.1 for iPad, iPhone and Android, are available now as a freeware downloads. No word yet as to the likely emergence of a Feedly add-on for Internet Explorer, one surprising omission on Feedly’s part.