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R.I.P Google Reader... Long Live Google Currents

There was a lot of uproar when Google decided to kill Google Reader. At the time I thought it was a bad move because a lot of people still use it to get their news and updates on topics. I know people like +Lauren Weinstein is a heavy user of Reader and there are petitions out there to keep it.

I haven’t used Google Reader for a couple of years now, so I decided to go back and see why I haven’t. What I notice was that the interface what not great and most importantly I already had a replacement. Flipboard.

Flipboard can consume RSS feeds, but more importantly it looks modern. It feels like I am reading a magazine or a newspaper. That is what attracted to me to it and it fits my needs. But what Flipboard also offers is a way for Content providers to dictate what they want to promote, and therefore use the Flipboard API and provide an even richer experience.

For my needs that is what I want as I am not someone who needs to be informed on every single story. But I know people are die hard RSS fans and they will miss Google Reader. But Google has a replacement for this, Google Currents.

Google Currents I believe has most of the features that Google Reader has. You have the ability to look at RSS feeds, plus Google Current Feeds which Content providers can dictate and sell. For the 90% of people who consume news, this is what we want and this is maybe one reason why Google has decided to kill Google Reader.

It also makes sense to Google as well. Why keep two news/feed aggregators running offering similar features. As we know from when +Larry Page took over, Google are trying to simplify its services and integrate its products. Reader and Currents seems logical to merge together. The question is will Google do it?

I can see Google doing this. They already invested in an Android and iOS app and knowing how web oriented Google are I am sure they will bring out a web version. And with +Android Police finding out Google Play News might be coming soon, Google will need a place to host it right? Google Currents is in the ideal place to do this.

tl;dr
So conclusion is, people consume news differently and not everyone is using RSS. RSS is still important and should be a feature in any product that wants to be a serious as a feed aggregator. But there is so many different ways to consume it and Google Reader just does not have the features anymore to stay relevant. Google has Currents and Reader and in my opinion it makes sense to get rid of one and put your efforts in the other. Currents needs to be web based though and I am putting a massive IF to Google if they will build it but I see no reason why they don’t. I guess with Google Play News rumours we probably see something by Google I/O, just in time before Reader dies on 1st July 2013.


The End of Google Reader Is Not the End of the World - Lauren Weinstein
http://lauren.vortex.com/archive/001014.html

Google Reader petition hits 100,000 signatures
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/9934604/Google-Reader-petition-hits-100000-signatures.html

Introducing 'Google Play News' - A Newspaper Section Is On Its Way To The Play Store
http://www.androidpolice.com/2013/03/15/introducing-google-play-news-a-newspaper-section-is-on-its-way-to-the-play-store/
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3 comments
 
Some die hard Google Reader fans do scan thru thousands of RSS posts per day using advance keyboard shortcuts and this high speed usage could not be supported by Currents. Personally I don't read so many RSS in fast speed so maybe Currents could be a substitute of Reader...
 
It could be if they brought currents to the web. But I don't think Google will do it.. just depends if the demand is really there.. But this is all speculation anyway :)
 
Flipboard is no replacement.  Currents is no replacement.  You actually listed content providers being able to promote content in your feeds as a feature.  The only thing a magazine layout allows is the ability for marketers to distract you with design. They took a tool, and replaced it with a toy.  
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