Earlier this month Google announced that come July, it would be shutting down its RSS aggregation service Google Reader. The Mountain View-based company said that though Google Reader had a dedicated following, usage had declined, leading to its shut down. Reader’s dedicated users, myself included, were near-devastated with the news, as few good alternatives exist.
Luckily multiple companies have stepped up to fill the gap that Google Reader will leave behind. Zite has released an alternative, and Feedly will operate on a standalone basis. Many apps that used Google Reader as a backbone are in trouble as well, including Reeder for iPad, which has gone free to download today.
Currently, Reeder for iPad uses Google Reader to function. When July rolls around, the app won’t be able to work in the same way, but the app’s creator, Silvio Rizzi, isn’t shutting reader down. Instead, the app offer support for services other than Google Reader.
The iPhone version of the app already supports Fever and the iPad will be updated in the near future to include support for Feedbin, an RSS aggregation service that costs $2 per month. Rizzi also plans to add more services for users to choose from in the coming weeks and months so that Reeder will continue to thrive even without Google Reader.
Reeder for iPad is currently being offered for free because it does not include the advanced features of the iPhone version. If you’re not familiar with Reeder, it is an RSS aggregator that puts content from all of your favorite sites in one easy to read location. It syncs across several platforms and has plenty of fantastic reading and sharing tools.
Reeder for Mac and iPad will be updated to 2.0 in the coming months. Version 2.0 will add all the features of the iPhone version, including all sharing and syncing services. Until then, Reeder for Mac and Reeder for iPad will be free, starting today.
At this point in time, Reeder for the iPad can still be used with Google Reader, and downloading it now for free is worthwhile, especially if you plan to use it in the future when it gets support for other services. You can download it here at no cost, which is a solid deal for an app that normally costs $4.99. Pick up the Mac version too – it’s also free for a limited time.