February 13, 2012
I loved Reeder. I still use it on my Mac and on my iPhone, but I’ve pushed it aside on the iPad. Now my favorite RSS reader on the iPad is called Mr.Reader and oh my god, is it awesome or what. Its got all the features you need in an RSS app, but there are just a few that make it magically good and I am so happy that I found it.
Yes, I’ll admit it, the look of the main screen is terrible. Its one of the ugliest main screens out there. But thankfully I don’t stay on that screen long. I almost always just click the item at the top and get to switch to the article view which is just absolutely wonderful:
One of the things that annoys me the most about Reeder is that the controls are on the left side. They are always over there and I cannot change them. So to go to the next article I either have to do the awkward push up on the screen or cross the screen with my right hand to click the down arrow. Ugh. How can they solve this? Do what Mr.Reader is doing, let me choose where that control bar goes. In this screenshot I have it on the right, but using that button on the bottom, I can move it down or to the left. Perfect.
Plus those arrows to move up and down are just rough indicators. As long as I tap the arrow or above the arrow (but below the other buttons) it goes to the previous article. As long as I tap the down arrow or below, it goes to the next one. Perfect!
But even though that was one of the main features I got Mr.Reader for, I don’t use it much. The reason is that they figured out an even better way to move around. If you put your thumb on the bezel and drag inward from the left or right, some other buttons drag in with the thumb, like the screenshot to the right. Let go and you go to the next article. Drag up to the button above and it goes to the previous. Wow, that is too cool!
There is one more feature however that makes this app such an important part of my workflow. Often I want to tweet about something I read. But I want that tweet to go out on a schedule so I use Buffer for that. Well, in Reeder, I could click the little services button to send an email. I could then choose the add to buffer email address and Buffer would add it to the queue. Not too tough, but having to type in that address was a bit of a pain.
Mr.Reader solves this by letting me creating a shortcut for the add to Buffer. Now I click that same services button but instead of having to fill out the details, I just choose email link to Buffer. As you can see, I have a few other choices as well and they are perfect for me. Like adding to my Pinboard account, adding to OmniFocus on my iPad, or emailing the whole article to my personal email. I don’t actually use that last one much since whenever I star an item I get it emailed to me automatically. You know how to do that? Maybe in another post…
My one wish for Mr.Reader is that it did real integration with BufferApp.com. Now that Buffer has an API, it should definitely be added to the list. I also look forward to an iPhone version.
There are other great features in this app, but the thumb-pad and the email link to a specific account are probably the top two that made me switch. I think it’s definitely worth checking it out and it’s so cheap there really is no excuse not to look at it.