Our friends from Google announced that Reader will be retired after a few months. Blah.
Their excuse is that usage has declined and there’s generally no sense to keep it running. That’s hard to believe, because Google Reader is used by almost everyone who is subscribed to Internet feeds. Once you’re hooked, it is difficult to stop using it.
The problem is that the hooked ones are obviously not too many, because the whole concept of RSS readers lost its momentum. I guess most, probably all of my friends are aware of Facebook and all that jazz, but few know what a RSS aggregator is.
So the only reason why such a good and successful platform fails to win new fans is that it’s not being promoted enough. With several initiatives to integrate it in popular sites and software (and why not even hardware?), Google could make something much bigger out of Reader, but instead they chose to concentrate on pushing their half-baked social network, Plus. Like every successful tech company, Google starts slowly and gradually to lose touch with the consumer. “We’re big, we can do whatever we want” – but that’s only until a new big star hits the market.
Sad but true. However, life goes on and people have tried to provide alternatives. The one that I personally have chosen is Feedly – a nice little app that can run on Chrome, Firefox, iOS or Android. The good thing is that now I can use Feedly directly with my Google account, and there I can read everything that I’ve subscribed to in Google Reader. When Reader passes away, the developers promise that everything will be transferred on their own platform and so Feedly will continue to work as before.