I haven’t done many iPhone application reviews or recommendations on 24100.net because there are so many other sites which do just that. Today I want to quickly point you to Feeds (link opens iTunes) which got released to the App Store the first week of January.
The German App Store returns more than 100 RSS related applications and I’ve certainly not tested them all but I did trie a lot. Google Reader syncing is one of my key requirements as I’m heavily using Google’s web based feed manager to go through my daily updates. If this is also one of your requirements, it significantly limits the number of options.
For almost a year I’ve been a loyal user of Byline. Byline has a decent user interface, syncs perfectly well with Google Reader and provides you with a good overview of what’s new and hot even if – like me – you’ve subscribed to 30+ feeds. The biggest issue I’ve had with Byline was performance and the fact that I could not add feeds from within the iPhone app itself. So in case I’d discovered a great new feed while I’ve been on the move, I had to wait to access a Mac to add the feed via Google Reader’s web interface and then sync it to the iPhone.
While Byline became recognizably slower with a growing number of feeds I always thought this might not entirely be the developers fault. Maybe syncing with Google Reader’s APIs did not allow for a better performance. It’s been Prime31 Web Design’s Feeds that told me the better.
Feeds feels about 20 times as fast as Byline! I cannot provide any real numbers but purely from an end user’s perception Feeds is just amazingly fast. Once I got used to its performance, I’ve never touched Byline again.
Besides this Feeds supports many other features, too:
- Star feed items
- Share feed items
- Email feed descriptions and links
- Categorize feeds into folders
- Read feeds offline
- Integrated view of the web version
- Tag feeds
- Add feeds to InstantPaper
Some of them depend on having a Google Reader account (sharing and tagging) but Feeds can also be used as a standalone RSS reader.