Rss news feeds are still one of the best ways to receive updates and news when they happen. When it comes to apps, users have several options at hand. From desktop readers over online services such as Google Reader, to mobile readers and reader extensions for the web browser.
News Factory is a Rss reader extension for the Chrome browser that introduces several interesting new features that the majority of alternatives do not offer in this form. Probably the most interesting feature is that it will automatically parse the history of the browser for news sources, to make the adding of feeds to the reader as comfortable as possible.
Just click on the add button to add a feed to the Rss reader, or use the search form at the top to paste a website url or feed url directly that you want to add.
While that's a cool way of providing the interested user with a list of feed suggestions, it lacks the option to import existing feeds from an OPML file or other service. But reading dozens or even hundreds of feeds is not what the extension has been designed for anyway.
There is another way of adding feeds that needs to be mentioned here. When you visit a page with a feed, or a feed url directly, you see a button pop up that allows you to add the feed to the reader application.
Feeds can be read with a click on the News Factory icon in the Chrome address bar. By default, all feeds are mixed together in the interface. You can filter the feed listing to only display a single feed by selecting that feed's icon in the interface.
You only see partial feeds in the reader. Each item is listed with its title, source, time of posting and the first few lines of text. A click opens the article on the original site in a new tab.
In addition to reading feeds actively, News Factory also displays notifications on the desktop when new items have been posted on monitored sites.
According to the information on the extension's website, it can also tap into Google Reader feeds if the user is logged into the Google account. The extension is not saving any account data though, which means that users need to make sure they are logged in to use the functionality.
News Factory is a pretty interesting option for users who like to monitor a manageable number of sites and feeds in the Chrome browser.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.