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Google's latest experiment involves bringing an RSS reader to Chrome

You'll have to be in the US and run Chrome Canary to try it, though.

Published onMay 20, 2021

New Google Chrome Material Theme Android
  • Google is set to introduce a new RSS Follow feature to Chrome.
  • The experimental feature will allow users to keep tabs on their favorite websites’ RSS feeds in the browser.
  • The feature will initially debut on Chrome Canary builds in the US as a test.

Many of us still miss Google Reader, the company’s super simple multi-platform RSS reader. However, the company may turn back the clock and reintroduce an RSS reading feature to Google Chrome on Android.

The addition, called RSS Follow, will allow users to subscribe to and keep track of feeds from their favorite sites directly in Google Chrome. The updates will be displayed in a new Following section within the browser’s new tabs. The company notes the move is to create “deeper connections” between publishers and consumers through the browser.

RSS, or Really Simple Syndication, first made its debut more than two decades ago and allowed websites to publish easily readable updates for users and apps alike. Android has seen plenty of RSS readers in its time, many of which are powerful curation stations for news. However, they do require users to install yet another app. The addition of RSS Follow to Chrome will likely encourage more users to adopt the venerable standard.

Google notes the feature first will be tested in Google Chrome Canary builds on Android “in the coming weeks.” The test will also be limited to the US for now. It’s unclear if desktop Chrome Canary builds will also receive the feature.

Would you use an RSS reader built into Google Chrome?

125 votes

“We will provide more guidance to web publishers as we learn and evaluate whether this feature will graduate from an experiment to a broader rollout in Chrome,” said Google in the announcement.

Would you use an RSS reader built directly into Chrome? Vote in our poll above, and let us know in the comments below.

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