Unread is an iPhone alternative to the king of iPad RSS readers, Mr Reader. Not that it works the same way, or looks anything like Mr Reader, or has anything to do with it at all. No, the thing that the new super-minimal, gesture-based Unread has in common with Mr Reader is sharing.
Some folks read RSS-based news, maybe think about it a little and then move on. But I’d argue that most people using an RSS reader these days want to shift the interesting stuff to somewhere else, be it Twitter, Instapaper, Pinboard and others. Unread does this, and also supports Drafts, letting you essentially grab any text from Unread and then send it to any other app or service.
A good thing too, becasue the otherwise excellent sharing mechanism is marred by a lack of support for things like Evernote. I’m sure this’ll be coming soon.
The rest of the app is all about reading. The screenshots show its beautiful custom fonts and full-screen reading view, its persistent browser that keeps a history of your browsed pages, its big thumbnails and its support for iOS 7’s background refresh. I would have tested these, but I can’t get the app to work without crashing.
I added my FeedWrangler account just fine (with help of the 1Password shortcut on the sign-in screen), but the app just crashes when I try to actually load and read my feeds. Every. Single. Time. I restarted, I installed the app on another device, and it’s the same everywhere.
Which is a shame, as I don’t have any other RSS reader on my iPhone yet, as I’ve found nothing as good as Mr Reader.
If you have a Feedly, FeedWrangler, or Feedbin account, and are willing to risk the $3 price, then go ahead – all the other articles I’ve read today say that Unread is just great.