Last night I clicked over from GoogleReader, where I was catching up on some of my RSS feeds, notably blackberrycool.com, when I saw this promo on blackberrycool.com for ‘blackberrycool to go”:
Now I tend to try out at least one or two downloadble mobile apps a week, so i clicked through, put in my email and did a quick OTA (over-the-air) install on my blackberry 8700c. Not knowing exactly what it would look like, I was surprised and happy to see a very light-weight, fast RSS reader powered by a product called Viigo. (The blackberrycool version seems identical to the regular product – just a few extra pre loaded mobile oriented feeds)
So a quick review:
– ease of use: A+
– layout/format: A-. It supports images, and even displays Feedburner feedflares, but they aren’t really active
– connectivity: A. It downloads in the background so off-line use isn’t that bad. It doesn’t pull down images in the background, but other than that it feels snappy.
– RSS support: A-.
Here is the funny part. It worked with EVERY feed I tried except when I tried to pull my own raanan.com RSS feed. My suspicion is that it doesn’t like the redirect I do from raanan.com/feed to http://feeds.feedburner.com/raanan. I use Steve Smith’s wordpress feedburner plugin which is great, but maybe Viigo can’t handle that. (UPDATE #1: Feedburner actually “adopted” this plugin a few days ago – props to the feedburner team for doing so. So I updated the plugin but still having the same problem. Need to do a bit more testing to see what the issue is.)
B+ A. It has delicious support built in ( very cool ! ), but no OPML import option. It also has a “full article” mode which strips out most of everything and pulls the full page — it’s somewhat useful. (UPDATE #2: Via the Viigo web account manager, you can not only import OPML, you can import your bloglines, and your MyYahoo setup )
Overall: A-. Definitely using this over the WAP/i-google mobile googlereader widget, which is what I was using up until now.
I posted earlier about going 100% mobile, and now I’m one step closer with this RSS reader. I’ve also been testing a killer mobile IM client that I will post about when it’s out of private alpha mode.
Update: So after 3 months of usage here are some ideas that would make this app even better:
– Instead of auto updating the feed every X minutes, the app should hook into a ping server to update the feeds
– Not sure the network providers would love this, but an option to download images in the background would be great.
– I obviously have lots of overlap with my web based Google Reader, and would like to see a way to sync back, so that any items that I read on Viigo would show up as read on Google Reader as well.
– Offline delicious support would be nice. Right now you can only use delicious when online.
– Finding that I often want to follow a link — an option for links to open up in browser would be great. Right now clicking on a link just brings up the menu within the app.
– Tag support. example usage: would like to tag a few feeds as “sports” and then just read the “sports” feeds.
– Alerts. Wold be great if it could alert me when a feed is updated via my blackberry inbox ( gTalk does a great job with this. ) For feeds with time sensitive info – like craigslist feeds – this would be a killer feature.
5 thoughts on “RSS reader for mobile review: Viigo”
Hey .. thanks a bunch for the review. After reading your review I decided to download Viigo.
Hello, have you tried pRSSreader 1.3.4? It’s very good also. You can have feeds organized by folders. Has cache system, loads images, opens links in configured browser, etc…
Sounds interesting, but unfortunately for me, it appears to be Pocket PC only: http://pda.jasnapaka.com/prssr/releases/1.3.4.php#requirements
Try http://www.ciwigiwi.com, they have a voice version of blog reader on mobile browser.