Feedly for Android review: Your full-featured Google Reader replacement

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

The Good Feedly offers curated suggestions, different layouts, and gesture-based shortcuts. Also, it is pretty darn attractive compared with other apps in its category.

The Bad Can't reorganize subscriptions from the mobile app. No two-panel view and should have one, especially on tablets. No OPML import tool (yet).

The Bottom Line Feedly for Android isn't perfect, but it is certainly one of the best mobile RSS readers available.


8.7 Overall
  • Setup 10
  • Features 8
  • Interface 9
  • Performance 10

With Google Reader officially gone, Feedly might be your best bet as an app that lets you access your RSS feeds while on the go. It looks great, works well, and offers a number of different display options that some people think make it even better than Google's departed reader. At this point, the app still isn't perfect, but with all of the work its developers are dedicating to its improvement, it has a good chance of eventually getting there.

The first thing you'll notice about Feedly is that, for an RSS reader, it's exceptionally attractive. While many other readers (including Google Reader) offer a decidedly basic design, mostly made up of lists and text, Feedly offers a much more polished experience. Its bright colors, clean lines, and sans-serif typefaces make up an overall modern look and feel. And because Feedly uses big images and creative layouts, using the app can feel almost like reading a magazine. So, if you don't mind something that's little more visually arresting than your everyday RSS reader, Feedly is as good a choice as any. At the same time, the app does offer less flashy display options (headlines only) for anyone who just wants to dive right into the text of their feed.

To get started using Feedly, you must log in with your Google account. You can either type one into the field or select any of the accounts that are connected to your Android device. If you're an existing Google Reader user, all of your RSS subscriptions, folders, and starred posts will automatically be imported. If not, then you'll have to start by giving Feedly a few sites to subscribe to. The bad thing here, of course, is that Feedly does not as of yet let you import an OPML file. This means that if you're coming from a service other than Google, then you'll have to start from scratch. Good news is, the app's developers have announced that they are, in fact, working on adding the feature.

Subscribing to sites
Using the Explore panel on the right side of the screen, you can either search for a specific site or browse through different collections of sites based on categories and interests. These collections are curated by Feedly to make it easy for newbies to find sources worth subscribing to. For instance, there are curated collections for Gaming, Business, Design, Gardening, and Lifestyle, as well as featured Etsy sites, YouTube channels, and Vimeo channels. There are even selections of sites in different languages. To subscribe to any of the listed sites, all you have to do is hit the "+" sign and categorize it. What the Feedly app is missing here is the option to subscribe to entire categories at once. The desktop browser-based version of Feedly lets you do this, but for some reason the mobile app doesn't.

Feedly's curated collections offer an assortment of interesting sites to get you started. Screenshot by Jaymar Cabebe/CNET

Another thing I find disappointing about the Feedly app is that it doesn't let you reorganize subscriptions. Within the app, you can't rename categories or move items between categories. You can only delete items or, of course, add new ones.

Hot Products

More Best Products

All best products