Summary:

Google Reader’s native mobile interface is OK, but it isn’t optimal for downloading items to read offline. So I was interested to try FeedsAnywhere, a new service that promised to improve Google Reader’s own mobile experience. Since it’s HTML-based, it works on lots of mobile devices.

On my recent train trip across the U.S., I didn’t do a lot of work, but I did keep up with the news on my iPod touch. I confess to being a news junkie, and have a huge number of RSS feeds that I follow. I generally use Google Reader, as it makes it easy to sync what I’ve read between computers.

Google Reader’s native mobile interface is OK, but it isn’t optimal for downloading items to read offline. So I was interested to try a new free service called FeedsAnywhere that promised to improve Google Reader’s own mobile experience. Since it’s HTML-based, it works on lots of mobile devices, including iPhones and BlackBerrys, as well as on laptops and desktops.

FeedsAnywhere has some nice features:

  • Manual feed selection or OPML import and export if you want to manage feeds without syncing to Google Reader.
  • An “interesting view” that tracks your reading and presents you with items it thinks you’ll like. I found this feature slightly creepy, but you can turn it off. See FeedsAnywhere’s FAQ and privacy policy for more information on how it works.
  • A simple menu lets you select how you want items from your feeds to be displayed.
  • A feed search option directly on the service’s main screen.
  • The ability to create “personal feeds” of news items you’ve selected.

Setting up FeedsAnywhere is pretty simple. Go to the FeedsAnywhere website and create an account. You’ll need to provide FeedsAnywhere with your Google username and password, which some readers may not be comfortable doing.

It’s in private beta, but the first 100 WWD readers to sign up using the invitation code gigaom will get access. I wasn’t able to register using my iPod touch, so you’ll need to set up your account using the browser on your desktop or laptop machine before moving to your mobile device.

After trying FeedsAnywhere, I still prefer the iPhone/iPod touch apps Reeder and Byline. But if you’re interested in a free (ad-supported) RSS reader that offers a better mobile interface than Google Reader’s own, give FeedsAnywhere a try.

How do you read RSS feeds on the go?

Related GigaOM Pro content (sub. req.): Are You Empowering Your Mobile Workforce?

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