When Google announced that they were pulling the plug on Google Reader, I started looking for something new.
I googled “Google Reader replacement” and got a huge selection of articles listing various alternatives. After scanning a bunch of them, it seemed to boil down to a few popular replacements — Feedly was the most widely recommended but The Old Reader, Newsblur, and NetVibes were among the top picks as well.
Then I realized something: I’m a Firefox user and Firefox probably has a plug-in for it.
Bingo. Firefox has a bunch and I checked out a few of them and found one I really like — Sage. I’ve been using it for about a month now and am happy with it. (Disclaimer: I’m not affiliated with Sage in any way. Just a happy user who found a good alternative to Google Reader).
If you are a Firefox user who wants a good Google Reader alternative, here’s what you can do to switch to Sage. It will take about 2 minutes.
STEP 1: INSTALL SAGE TO FIREFOX
Go to the Sage Add-on page and click “Add to Firefox” to install it. You’ll be prompted to restart to Firefox.
You’ll notice that there’s a little green leaf (a sage leaf perhaps?) on your browser toolbar now.
When you click on it, a sidebar pops open on the left side of your browser giving you a list of feeds, and displaying a few posts of those feeds on the right.
Here’s the screenshot below with my feeds displayed — the list of feeds on the left and a few of the actual posts on the right. I can scroll down for more and click on these to go to the source site.
Whenever you want to finish using Sage, you can click the green leaf button or the ‘X’ in the sidebar.
STEP 2: DOWNLOAD YOUR GOOGLE READER FEEDS
Now go to Google Takeout and sign in with your Google Account.
You’ll see these three buttons near the top of your screen….
Click “Choose Services”. That will take you to this page…
Find the Google Reader button and click it.
Then click “Create Archive”.
That will download a zipped copy of your Google Reader feeds to your computer.
Unzip the folder.
STEP 3: UPLOAD YOUR FEEDS TO SAGE
In Sage, click “Options” and then click OPML Import/Export…
That will give you an upload screen. Find your unzipped Google Reader feeds folder on your computer (which you downloaded in step 2, above) and open it, then keep drilling down through the folders until you get to a file labelled “Subscriptions”. It was the only file that showed up when I did this, so that’s nice and easy! :)
Upload that file.
You should now see your files.
You can rename them, reorganize them, whatever. You can access the feeds in Sage or in your bookmark menu. You can add new feeds by saving a bookmark and delete they by removing a bookmark. You’ll find Sage as an option in Subscribe-to-RSS drop-down menus.
HERE’S WHY I LIKE SAGE
Sage is super easy to set up and use. But here’s the real reason that I like Sage: It got me back into my feeds again. I love my feeds and use them a lot but had fallen out of the habit because I had a ton of stuff competing for my attention and a million sites to sign into and check. But Sage is right there, bringing my feeds back to my attention and they’re much faster and easier to access.
I hope that’s helpful!