AOL Reader, which was revealed in a quiet Web launch recently, is now live for beta testers. The service can be accessed by anyone with an AOL, Twitter, Facebook or Google account — we logged in using a Google account — and offers a simple and easy way to access your RSS feeds.
Clearly AOL sees a market here: Google is shutting down its own RSS reader on July 1, just a few days from now, and several companies have jumped at the chance to snatch up its users. Feedly offers a competing service, Facebook may have one on the way and there are several smaller options that have cropped up, too.
AOL Reader looks awfully similar to Google Reader, which is actually a good thing considering how much we like that client. We were able to upload an .XML file of our subscriptions in just a few seconds, and they seemed to immediately populate the feed, though it’s still taking some time to deliver new stories correctly. It’s terribly out of sync with our Google Reader account right now, for example. Like Google Reader, there’s a quick option to mark everything as “read,” which we appreciate.
We can’t complain, AOL Reader is free and hopefully it sticks around for a while.