Google Labs released Google Reader last week at the Web 2.0 conference and it was much talked about in the blogosphere. Google Reader is an RSS Reader that allows you many of the same tools that are offered by other RSS feed readers however also enables users to search by keyword for new feeds. Google Reader’s appearance is similar to the Personalized Google homepage functionality that allows you to pull in RSS feeds in the left rail.
I was unable to get to checking it out till yesterday a when I did I found the functionality to be in-line with the rest of the readers but offers several navigational niceties that allow you to arrange and view feeds differently. The biggest differentiating factor from other RSS reader is the search that Google Reader provides. It appeared very accurate in finding feeds via keyword search. The only downside I see as a blogger is that Google Reader uses a site’s atom.xml file to index the Google Reader search therefore it does not give a user the feed that a blogger may want a user to subscribe to. For example, if you set up a Feedburner feed for your blog, Google Reader’s search would not be able offer that Feedburner feed to users but rather offer a atom.xml feed that is found from crawling your blog. This will keep Google Reader subscribers from being counted by Feedburner's metrics package which makes the readership stats only a subset of your subscribers.
For more information on the Google Reader read this post on the Google blog. The Google Reader is getting mixed reviews from the blogosphere. To see for yourself check out doctorvee, Content Doctor, Twisted View, The Geek Guy Rants, Stormgrass, flipthedolphin and Eric Setiawan. Additionally, Holizz versus the Web has offered a Google Reader bookmarklet that allows you to add items to Google Reader more easily from your browser.