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Read your favorite feeds on the go with RSS News Hub for BlackBerry 10

A quick and easy way to read your favorite feeds offline or online while on the go

By Alicia Erlich on 18 Oct 2013 07:58 am EDT
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When switching over to BlackBerry 10, losing social feeds was a painful blow. I may not have accessed it for my social networks, but when it came to news or tech blog posts I loaded multiple RSS feeds to keep me abreast of the latest happenings. To fill in the gap, there is RSS News Hub, a native and intuitive application for all your subscription needs. 

To be honest, I actually view feeds at work via MS Outlook. Adding and reading them is not the most enjoyable experience. With RSS News Hub, entering and finding RSS feeds is painless, without requiring the user to create an account. Simply enter in the feed URL or the main web address and RSS does the rest. It scans for available feeds and, if found, displays them for you to select.

For further customization, you may toggle on or off the option to enable notifications, select a corresponding LED Color, or choose an icon for how the feed appears in your list if not satisfied with the default. Once enabled, notifications appear under that heading in the Hub and the corresponding color flashes to indicate when new feeds are available. 

Feeds can be exported by swiping down from the top for backup and restore purposes. However, for those wishing to access them from other services such as Feedly or Digg, there is an import button as well. Please note the developer is currently working on Feedly integration now that the API's have opened up. 

For me, it's all about the visual capability and reading experience. Articles are neatly arranged in reverse chronological order though sorting by unread is available. Font size for thumbnails and reader view is adjustable which is a plus for anyone not fond of tiny print. Finally, there is a slider bar which allows you to navigate between reader and web view and a link to open in the browser if more convenient is located at the bottom. Tapping on each post displays a quick synopsis (or first few lines of text) which aids in the decision on whether to move on to the full article. Being native means no lag is evident and it flows quite nicely between screens.  

What is especially helpful is the options available for Q5/Q10 users. As they do not have the same size screen as the Z10, this is accounted for. Digging deeper into settings, users can change between the light and dark theme, auto-hide the action bar, toggle images on or off, and remove the unread bar at the top so nothing is cut off.

An interesting feature which I prefer, is the search option. By entering in a keyword you can establish your own personal feed. Articles are populated either through Google News or Yahoo News, whichever you decide to use, based on that term. 

With all of this said, I'm sure heavy users will clamor for additional tweaks here and there such as being able to search within feeds. As for me it fits my needs perfectly. When not at home I want instant access to news which this more than adequately provides. You won't be disappointed and the developer is already compiling a list of features for future releases.

Good
  • Quickly add feeds from browser or by inputting address
  • Active Frame support
  • Feeds are arranged by predetermined topics
  • No account required to use
  • Displays unread count next to each feed
  • Share stories using BlackBerry framework
  • Cache feeds for offline viewing
The Bad
  • No search within feeds capability
  • Unable to reorder feeds
  • Cannot mark as favorite when adding a feed
The Bottom Line

RSS Hub is a great option for users to manage their feeds and have instant access to their favorite news and blog sites for $0.99. Originally conceived by the developer so he could personally read RSS feeds offline, it has grown into a feature-rich tool that everyone can enjoy. With it's easy to read and navigate interface, it is compatible with all BlackBerry 10 devices. 

More information/purchase RSS News Hub

45 comments

crjboy95

We want instagram

Posted via CB10

Devil

You're a guy... have some shame.

Posted via CB10

seanpriest

You're a devil, say no more.

Posted via CB10

mrskycar

Really good app. I use it a lot.

Posted via keyboard bearing Q10

Makaveli@Beta

Crjboy what does any of your post have to do with this rss app.

Please go cry to.the developer of instagram as they are responsible for this app not blackberry.

Posted via CB from my z10

Loc22

I never really understood how RSS really work can someone help? Thanks in advance ;-)

Posted via CB10

Elessar.cm

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) has been around for quite a while, and can be used for different purposes. Here's my example.
I like to keep tabs on new info on a number of different topics via a range of web sites. But I don't want to hop back and forth between them. I use Feedly (since Google Reader was killed off) to gather new articles/posts from CB main page, specific CB forums, BB Community Support forums, select iMore pages/forums Life Hacker, some industry-specific pages -- just to name a few. I use gNewsReader to access/sync with Feedly. I see a list of articles, posts that I can scan, then click on any that interest me to go to the page to read the item. I can keep something as Unread, flag it to read later, tag it for later reference. I scan about 300 article/post titles a day. It keeps me up to date with the least amount of effort. I'd be lost without it.

koool1

Zinio??

Posted via CB10

cletis

No, this is a feed reader.

MADBRADNYC

Hmmm. Doesn't today's update allow to re-order and edit feeds?

Also, I've always been able to add a feed and create it in my favorites folder. Even before today's update.

Maybe I'm reading this incorrectly?

Posted via CB10

z10developer

I think Alicia mean adding feed directly to Favorites, without adding it to regular category first.

Posted via CB10

Alicia Erlich

Yes that is what I meant. :)

Posted via CB10 on my LE

Alicia Erlich

At the time of this review, the update was not yet available in BlackBerry World. 

MADBRADNYC

Yeah BlackBerry World is so fickle. Sometimes I get no notifications at all, and have to open the app in MyWorld to find an update. This update actually notified me and was available for me about 2 hours prior to this blog post, but then again it may have been a small roll-out for everyone to get it. Thanks for the nicely written article.

Cheers!

sixer6

I love RSS Savvy, don't see a reason to switch.

Akuji_ism

Bough the app but am waiting for developer to add Feedly support. In the meantime I'm using gNewsReader.

z10developer

Yeah, Feedly integration is in progress. Will try to deliver it ASAP :)

moosbb

Hey dude didnt saw yu around :)

You finally get it ;)

moosbb

Nice to finally get a review about that super native app.

You would even can add to the list that the dev is availiable on forum and open to any idea/feature!

Would like to see more an more native apps like that!

z10developer

Thanks man!

Posted via CB10

ofutur

Looks like a nice start. If he fixes the bad, finishes the feedly integration and adds powerful sharing options, he could have a killer app.

Alicia Erlich

It already allows articles to be shared via the framework (i.e. Email, BBM, BBM Channels, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)

ofutur

Yes, but Social Feeds allowed to share to multiple networks at once. Granted, there are now some options on BB10 to do the same thing, so maybe it doesn't need to be implemented by the app.

hsianloon

Using it for bout 2 months, a great rss app, the reader mode works very well bar a few websites that split their content into a few pages.

Won't regret that 99 cents!

From my smokin' Barbeque10

blindguy

This looks nice. I like the fact that you can adjust the font size in reader mode. Another great review by Alicia.

z10developer

Yes, review is really great. I couldn't make it any better even though i developed that app :)
Thanks a lot Alicia!

naviwilliams

Not a bad little app. I do wonder if more people get 'news' via Twitter now versus a RSS Feeder? I miss the old app we used to use back in the day, I can't even remember the name of it now. 

Adva_

I suggested a web view to read comments about articles and he implemented it. Love it.

cvcv

Would be great if we could integrate this RSS feed app as a separate App in the BB10 Hub (like whatsapp), plus if it could read articles out loud (text to speech) :)

z10developer

I've requested BlackBerry Hub integration, but it is a subject for BlackBerry approval...

Posted via CB10

Devil

I second that hugely! I've been asking for this for a very long time (previously Messages integration for OS 7). I'd pay upto $5 for that.

Imagine going through your hub, which you HAVE to do for personal messages... you see news clips as they get delivered to your phone? Orgasm!

Posted via CB10

peterallcdn

Looks very clean and love that you can adjust the font size unlike my current app gNewsReader. If only it actually synced with Feedly, since I prefer a bigger screen when possible, I'd pick this app up without hesitation.

mnc76

People should also check out

RSS Savvy

It's native, it's free, has a better UI than this app and has many features that this app does not have!

I support BB10, NOT BB Management!

z10developer

Looks like you are not aware of features provided by my app... Does RSS Savvy has offline mode, active frames, background updates,customization of BB Notifications, LED color customization, backup/restore function, import/export from OPML files, dark/bright theme support, custom icons for categories and feeds?! And it not exhaustive list of RSS Hub features.
As for UI it is very subjective as a lot of people really like RSS Hub UI...
I think you need to be objective when throwing out such statements!

Omnitech

I have watched the RSS apps for BB10 closely since the launch of BB10.

I have never found one particularly to my liking.

I end up reading News on RSS Savvy only because it's the only option with a tolerable UI that doesn't require exporting all my personal reading habits to someone else's server.

As you point out, it is missing MANY features, such as the ability to export a feed, or to read offline, or to control the expiration parameters, feed history, etc etc.

I just bought your app and I am willing to spend a dollar in the hopes it will eventually become what none of the others have so far.

The free "RSS Demon" app for Android is vastly superior to anything I've seen on BB10 so far, though clearly I'm willing to spend money for a good app if it is truly useful.

Good luck with RSS News Hub.

Omnitech

On other thing: to me, where MANY RSS readers fail is in how they actually display articles.

The WHOLE POINT, to me, of using RSS to read articles is to avoid all the garbage and advertising and banners and extraneous junk that I get shoved down my throat when using websites for this.

If an RSS reader can not give me a CLEAN and FAST display of articles WITHOUT all of that junk thrown in, it's useless to me.

Some of the BB10 RSS apps rely on instapaper or some other 3rd-party site to reformat articles to be readable. Then of course this slows them down and when the 3rd-party site is down the entire app is unusable.

Other apps have such a barren UI that you can't easily scroll through an article list to find what you want. I think we need a combination of text and (user configurable/disableable) thumbnails to allow quick scroll to find content we wish to read.

Then when opening the article itself, we need options to see full size images if we desire to (so we can actually SEE what is in the image on a small display if necessary), and we need the ability to open a link if we choose to do so (INCLUDING the ability to use a 3rd-party browser such as Evolution, rather than the limited native browser)

Case in point: Business Insider uses various tricks to try to magnify their revenue by splitting articles up into tiny pieces, or throwing up a popover ad, or various javascript junk, and they don't recognize the BB10 browser as mobile so everything is microscopic and I have to zoom and scroll until my hand falls off and eyes fall out to see anything. Loading such pages in the native browser it's a completely useless waste of my time.

With RSS Savvy, I cannot select Evolution (which solves many of those problems) directly to view an article, so I have to long-press on the article, select the sharing options menu, share to Remember (which will display the article link in a new document), then long press on THAT link, select sharing AGAIN, and only now can I select Evolution and actually READ such articles.

If you can solve problems like that - ie allow me to either see the article in its "de-junked" state directly, or allow me to DIRECTLY open it in Evolution, I will be indebted to you.

niss63

Well said.

Posted via CB10

unbreakablej

I use RSS Savvy, which is awesome and free as well!

Posted via CB10

jic999

try to add a feed and says " no rss feed found check URL "

DJ Reyes

Nice find Alicia, definitely going to check this one out

Posted via CB10

Pete The Penguin

This is one of the best RSS readers on any platform plus it's Built for BlackBerry certified. It would be even better with the ability to sign-in to Feedly rather than having to import the OPML file.

The dev is responsive to feedback which is brilliant.