Bloglines - Free Web-Based RSS News Feed Reader

The Bottom Line

Bloglines was a great, web-based way to read RSS feeds. There's no software to wrestle with, and using Bloglines is smooth and easy. You can even subscribe to searches in either your or all feeds and publish a blog with remarkable simplicity.

Bloglines is no longer available.

Pros

  • Bloglines is friendly, easy to use and universally accessible
  • Individual news items can be clipped, emailed and blogged easily
  • Bloglines lets you organize feeds with folders and playlists and offers saved searches

Cons

  • Bloglines does not offer smart playlists
  • Feed item display can't be customized
  • Bloglines lacks a three-pane view

Description

  • Bloglines is a web-based news reader that aggregates RSS feeds and email newsletters.
  • News sources can be organized in folders in Bloglines, and you can read all news in a folder easily.
  • Set up "playlists" with all your favorite feeds, grouped by theme or time, occasion or circumstances.
  • Bloglines lets you clip and annotate individual news items to get back to them later.
  • You can also publish your news clippings (as well as free-form entries) as a blog in Bloglines.
  • A low-graphic, fast-loading edition of Bloglines is available for mobile devices. iBloglines is optimized for the iPhone.
  • Pop-up window, Firefox extension and Windows/Mac OS X apps notify you about new news in Bloglines.
  • Bloglines can import and export subscriptions via OPML files and lets you manage your blogroll.
  • Search across all of Bloglines' feeds or just yours and subscribe to the search results as a feed.
  • Bloglines lets you specify a preferred language, links to Google translation for non-matching items.

Expert Review - Bloglines - Free Web-Based RSS News Feed Reader

Web-based email is nice, but it can't beat a fully blown desktop client.

What about web-based RSS news feed readers? Bloglines shows that they must not pale in comparison to their desktop counterparts.

Bloglines is easy to use, almost always does the right thing (like showing only new items when you first click on a feed with all items available flexibly or offering snappy keyboard shortcuts) and spares you the hassle of downloading and wrestling with another piece of software. Plus you can access Bloglines from everywhere with just a browser.

You can even subscribe to email newsletters and read them like RSS feeds in Bloglines. You don't have to do without smart organizing either. Bloglines lets you subscribe to search results (either in your feeds or in all blogs known to Bloglines) elegantly and "playlists" offer custom assortments of blogs (where each feed can show up in any relevant playlist). Integration with other search engines would be nice, though, and threading blog items would be even nicer.

Managing and organizing your feeds flexibly is a snap in Bloglines. Not only can you group subscriptions in folders, you can also clip individual news items. Add annotations and make your clippings publicly accessible and you have your easy to use and nicely integrated Bloglines blog.

It would be great if the feed and clipping listings loaded a bit faster, though, and custom style sheets for news display in addition to the neat default style could be nice, too.

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