What's the best RSS app for android when traveling?
The selection has shrunk
RSS = Really Simple Syndication. The chances are your favorite website has an RSS feed, which means instead of visiting it, you can have all their latest publications delivered to you.
Still not sure about RSS? Check out my guide on what is RSS.
Since about 2010 RSS apps lost their appeal to many as social media like Facebook and Twitter took off. Though social media in no way comes close to RSS the masses voted and RSS apps lost their steam. Many come and go every year.
The last two working RSS apps on this page are Feedly and Aggregator.
What I'm looking for in an rss app:
Displaying content well. Ease of use. Low bandwidth consumption. Speed. Offline caching. Photos. Synch ability with Google reader*.
I really enjoy RSS feeds, they deliver content to me from the places I want to read it from. On mobile I found it a struggle to get an app that could do it all.
The biggest issue was finding apps that displayed content well. A lot of them reformat blog posts and they come out not looking good at all. Moreover, a lot of mobile RSS apps consumed a staggering amount of bandwidth, not good when you're traveling!
FeedR: Not much comes close to this RSS app in terms of getting just about everything right.
Displays feeds much like they are online, well formatted
Removes and adds feeds with ease
Syncs with no errors to Google reader*
Set a time to update all feeds
Set it to only update on WiFi or Mobile network
Nice simple options to mark feeds read
Little slow in updating large number of subscriptions
Small ad at the bottom
Handles podcasts badly
Doesn't always cache images for offline viewing
There's very little I don't like about this app. It works, and works well. The ad at the bottom has never interfered with my reading of feeds. I would like it to synch a little faster, and consume less battery when doing so.
Taptu: Looking for a multi-functional RSS app with great eye candy? Taptu does all that and more!
Displays feed titles beautifully
Low bandwidth consumption
Huge pre selected lists of genre related feeds
Available for Android or iPhone
Steep learning curve to get things set up right
99 feed limit
Adds @taptu on some rss shared tweets
Doesn't show all images on a feed
Imagine streams of the best RSS feeds already set up for you in hand categories. Tech feeds, photography feeds, and travel feeds from some of the best blogs out there. Taptu has all this ready for you, and you can add to these streams too, or create your own. All wrapped up in a low bandwidth and great looking RSS app that I highly recommend you try.
Google Reader: Surely the king of online feed readers must be the best on mobile too? (*Google have announced it will be closing this service in July 2013)
Syncs directly with your google account
Watch embedded videos
Not going to be around much longer*
Poor GUI makes it hard to use
Hard to navigate through a lot of feeds
The app feels cheap, and unfinished in many respects compared to others
Mark all read button is hard on mobile as it's easy to click by mistake
I really thought this app would work well, sadly it's GUI was too annoying for me. The best thing about this service is that you can tap into it via other apps. Unfortunately Google is closing this service in July 2013.
gReader: The unofficial Google reader of mobile apps, is it any better?
Syncs directly with your Google account easily*
Watch embedded videos
Lack of folder view makes it hard to sort through feeds
Slow to update feeds
Again I thought this app would improve upon Googles native app. It's a little better, but I still have issues sorting through feeds. I put them into categories for a reason, this app and Googles own seem to display feeds alphabetically. *Another app that's in trouble due to its dependency on Google reader.
Feedly: The contender to the RSS reader crown?
Syncs directly with your Google account easily*(working on their own system)
Slow on mobile
No offline capability
With the announcement of Googles Reader closing many people are saying Feedly is the next best thing. And, it pretty much is with a desktop version. The only thing that worries me is the unknown price they might will start charging for the service. The biggest issue for travel however is that that mobile app is does no work offline. So it's a no go for me based on this alone.
NewsRob: A contender to the throne? One of Androids most popular RSS readers
Very easy to set up
Exceptionally nice GUI
Set a time to update feeds
Syncs well with Google reader*
First sync only captures latest posts, so you cannot read older ones
Doesn't mark feeds read well at all
At first sight this app looks to be the best. But the initial GUI is let down by a poor response to read feeds not being marked read! Also the fact it only seems to show unread feeds mean you cannot read older posts from the day you install it. If the developer can work on this, it's a really great reader.
FastReader: How fast is fast? And, is it really any good?
Easy icons to glance at feeds
Multiple options available
Bad GUI with not folder listings
With a name like FastReader I was expecting something good. I got another generic looking reader that was actually quite slow.
Daily Reader: A new contender to the throne
Easy to set up
The whole feed shows through as it does online
No categories or folders makes it hard to navigate
This app falls under the generic term again. Looks very nice with lots of points for how a single feed is displayed. But the inability to display folders or have feeds grouped into categories makes it a nightmare to use.
Aggregator: Meant to have lots of options but ....
Import of opml feeds was fast
No Google reader sync, only via opml import
No folder view
Does not update old feed items
Another case of all talk and not action. Looks to be promising but lets down with no sync or group by folder options.
Pulse: Great eye candy but does it work well?
Easy to navigate
Major bandwidth hog!
Slow to update
No sync to Google reader option
Doesn't save images well
Limited number of feeds allowed
I had high hopes for this app, until I noticed how much bandwidth it was consuming. Even on WiFi with only 40 feeds I was up to 50MB on updating feeds! Limited amount of feeds allowed too. With no sync options. Only for those that like shiny things on permanent internet connections..
RSS app recommendations:
RSS feeds keep me updated on news, my favorite blogs, and about what's going on around in the world. In terms of subscribing to your favorite sites without having your inbox cluttered up they are great.
I'm constantly on the move and want something that's reliable and will work in tough WiFi / mobile situations.
Today Feedly rains supreme as a good RSS reader with Aggregator coming in close. After that there's a mass of come and go apps for both Apple devices, Android and indeed Windows. While RSS is not going anywhere as many News readers use RSS to show multiple channels for average readers the choice has been narrowed down in recent years.
A final option is use a news reader and add your own RSS channels to it.