RSS: The Old Reader launches Premium version, $30 a year

The demise of Google Reader caused a bit of a hoo-ha last year, with many news addicts left to search out another RSS reader to house their numerous feeds.

After working your way through the various alternatives, chances are you’ve found one you’re happy with now, whether it’s Feedly, Digg Reader, Pulse, or some other reader among the myriad of offerings out there.

The Old Reader was a natural choice for many, as its design – like its name cleverly suggests – emulates that of Google’s shuttered reader.

However, if you did jump onto The Old Reader and have more than 100 feeds, the company announced Wednesday that you’re now classed as a Premium user, and as a consequence will need to hand over three bucks a month, or thirty bucks a year, to continue using the service.

For the next two weeks, the site is also offering a discount where you can use the reader for two bucks a month or twenty bucks a year. Keep in mind, though, that this is only available to the first 5,000 account holders that apply, so you’d better get your skates on if the deal appeals.

Less than 100 feeds? You can still sign up to the Premium service and enjoy the benefits, which include full-text search, faster feed refresh times, and the ability to create up to 500 subscriptions.

You’ll also get Instapaper and Readability integration as well as early access to new features, the team said in a blog post Wednesday.

The company behind The Old Reader, which bought it from the original developers last summer, said the payment system has been introduced to cover running costs such as hosting, development and support. It looked at the possibility of incorporating ads but chose the Premium route after deciding sponsored content would be too invasive.

According to The Old Reader, only 10 percent of current users have more than 100 feeds, so the vast majority can continue to use it for free. However, if you’re a heavy user of the service and would rather not pay for it, you could always try one of the free readers mentioned at the top of the page.

[Image: Pavel Ignatov / Shutterstock]

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