The news sites and blogs are always refreshing information every hour. If you aren’t using RSS feeds to consume that content, you’re certainly in for a treat to save your time and data to consume all kinds of content from a single app. Of course, the dedicated apps from media organizations are nice, but what if you’re only interested in Markets, Business, Sports, or a combination of a few topics?
So instead of opening several tabs or keeping handful of news apps, RSS feeds from multiple sources allow you to enjoy content in a single app.
The RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds mostly fetch the title, photo, and some text (at times full article) and lets you read them without distractions. So you can follow the latest updates of your favorite blogs and websites all in one place instead of having to visit multiple sites on your Mac.
Here’s a compilation of the best 5 RSS news reader apps that we found extremely useful.
Note: We’ve used these apps on macOS 11 Big Sur public beta and they worked without any issues. The screenshots were captured with macOS in dark mode.
NetNewsWire is a free, open-source RSS feed reader app, and I bet you’d heard of it when trying to look for a dedicated RSS feeds app. The app’s recent version delivers a fast and reliable RSS news reading experience. The RSS feeds enthusiasts can link their Feedbin account, which comes with a paid subscription.
And the Feedly users can keep their read items synced across devices as well. It does come with a handful of sources, and you can always import the OPML file from elsewhere.
Its two-column, single pane interface will remind you of apps like MS Outlook. So will most apps on this list. Using a lot of keyboard shortcuts with the spiffy experience is fun. So is tinkering with a bevy of customizations and power-packed search. The only place this app falls shorts is the capability to share a few things. So if you seek an open-source app that you’ll customize later as per your convenience, then NetNewsWire checks most of the right boxes.
2. Reeder 5
Note: The screenshot is of Reeder 4 and it was taken before Reeder 5 was released.
Previously, the major updates took a while, and you should be thankful that they did. The developers proactively roll out app updates immediately after the new iOS version drops.
Read Later and Mark As Read on scroll will be extremely convenient for the prolific readers who prefer RSS feeds to consume news. And it only gets better with a bouquet of support for third-party services like Feedbin, Feedly, FeedHQ, NewsBlur, Instapaper, Pocket, and others. Of course, you can always import the OPML file from other services. If you love polished interface and animations, then you’ll have to buy Reeder 5 from the Mac Store for $9.99
ReadKit serves as a perfect no-nonsense newsreader app with support for several Read it later services like Instapaper, Readability, and Pocket. Either of these services can really help you organize the long-form or other content that you wish to read later at peace. Alternatively, you can star them as well.
The Smart Folder option lets you manage and organize your feed subscriptions into meaningful subjects and categories. For instance, I’ve sorted mine into Android, Apple, Gaming, and so on. Wondering how to add your feeds collection? Well, ReadKit supports a host of RSS feeds subscription services like Feedly, Feedbin, NewsBlur, Feed Wrangler, and even Fever.
Okay, I saved the best for the last – Focus mode and Search (self-explanatory). The Focus mode hides all the columns with folders and turns the window into a full screen to read the article. ReadKit is available for $9.99 from the Mac App Store.
4. News Explorer
One of the strong points of the News Explorer app is that it supports synching content from RSS, Atom, JSON, and even Twitter feeds. On top of that, it also supports Podcast RSS feeds so that you don’t miss out on your favorite podcast episodes.
That’s why News Explorer is my go-to RSS readers to catch up on Podcasts while I read and scroll through several feeds from different sources. While it offers most features for customizing views and managing sources, there’s one more reason to prefer News Explorer.
The app costs $9.99 if you want to purchase it from the Mac App Store. However, if you buy SetApp’s monthly subscription for the same amount, you get News Explorer and several other paid apps for free – all included in the subscription amount. I think that’s a pretty good deal if you just want to try out several paid apps for a month and then continue the subscription if you wish. So this app suits the best for the folks looking for that value-for-money quotient with paid Mac apps.
The Feedly app looks like a browser-wrapped version of its online app but for Macs. So why is it on this list? Well, if the above four apps couldn’t convince you, then Feedly is the best option to start.
It offers several popular RSS sources categorized by subjects – Technology, Startup, Business, Sports, Health, and more. So you pick the category that interests you and then select the sources that offer RSS feeds.
While the free version should work for most users, the Feedly Pro for $6 per month bundles more feed sources, lets you share over social networks, copy content to note-taking apps, and more. The Pro+ plan cost $8.25 per month includes Leo, an AI-powered digital assistant, the tweaks and prunes your collection to remove duplicates, classifies updates by topics, adds mute filters, summarizes, and more.
To Read or Not
After Google Reader shut down, I moved the OPML file of the RSS feeds to Feedly, which really helped to subscribe to many similar sources and get rid of infrequent or overlapping ones. As a recovering RSS reading fan, I now prefer the ones with Read It Later services baked inside.
Most other apps on this list support a Feedly account. So transferring your curated lists and sections from Feedly to another app will be quite a breeze. Meanwhile, I shoutout to Netscape for gifting the world RSS to manage the information overload. So which RSS news feed readers do you use on your Mac, iPhone, Android, or Windows PC?
Last updated on 15 February, 2023
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