FeedSpot, an RSS reader has initially started out as a keyword following platform, where a user could subscribe to a keyword, using which content from around the web would be presented to you. On a user profile, other users could see the keywords that you're following and can choose to follow them as well and vice-versa.
In a way, they've pivoted, and have now launched a public beta of the product. Feedspot is now like a Flipboard for PC. It really is. The reason I say this, is that ever since the Google Reader shutdown, there have been so many attempts to fill that space. Feedspot is particularly interesting as it approaches the problem differently.
If you're the typical tech enthusiast, you probably have at least 10 tabs open every day, or you subscribe to an RSS reader like Feedburner. Outside this savvy world of people who use RSS readers, exists a fairly significant crowd that goes to these sites and reads everyday. By collating a rich list of sources and pre-bundling them with the app, the user experience is greatly enhanced, reducing the user's interactions to a few clicks.
Post this, Feedspot lays out the content in a very mobile first way, with your sources on a left hand side column and the corresponding content on the right hand side. Some sources allow you to read the article within the reader itself, while the others redirect to site, due to permission issues. In a few hours, I had what I would read individually across 20 different tabs in one, beautiful layout.
Not just a pretty face
I spoke to Feedspot co-founder, Anuj Agarwal and he shared that it was built with a working revenue model. He says, "Feedspot follows a subscription based model where features that you find in other RSS readers, like following a site using it's RSS (which is not in their content source list) or a smart search option (search for keywords within your subscribed sources) and we remove ads. We've broken even using this model itself. Going forward, we'll be integrating some of the paid features in the free version itself."
Feedspot was co-founded by Anuj and Vineet Agarwal, both of whom are computer science grads from the US. Apart from this, product is backed by some serious resource beef, with a strong tech and biz dev team in the US and has ex-IBM, eBay, Apple and Yahoo exec, Dr. Larry Cornett, on their advisory board as well. Aunj further shared that since it's public beta launch in June, Feedspot has added 150,000 suers and as of today, it adds one new user every minute.
I love the Feedspot. Anuj once mentioned that user experience and design is their IP and I buy it. The clean interface makes for hours of reading. Also, choosing to build this for the web was probably a good idea, as there aren't many other readers like Feedspot. As of now, there isn't a Feedspot mobile app yet, but it is in the works. Anuj says, "It's mobile first design but PC first go to market.
If you're looking to put all your favorite content in one place and a great reading experience, you're probably spoilt for choice with options like Feedly and Flipboard magazines coming to the web. Add Feedspot to that list.
Anuj has also been very generous in offering all YourStory readers with a year's worth free subscription. Use YOURSTORY_FEEDSPOT, on the upgrade page, once you've signed up.