On July 1, Google Reader will be shut down. After nearly 5 years in the App Store, this also marks the end of the road for NewsRack.
While it has always been possible to use NewsRack as a standalone RSS reader, in practice, most users preferred to sync their subscriptions with Google Reader, and with that possibility going away, the app loses much of its value.
It's been clear for a while that Reader didn't get much love from Google, and its API was never officially supported. This has been one of the main reasons that I moved my focus away from NewsRack and began working more on other apps — basing a business on a quasi-monopolistic web service with an uncertain future just seemed like a very risky proposition.
I realize now that I should have drawn the consequences a lot sooner — it's been clear for a while that NewsRack was falling behind the competition in a lot of ways. I'm sorry that I've not been able to give NewsRack as much attention as it would have needed to move forward.
How do I get my feeds out of NewsRack?
Both versions of NewsRack (iOS and Mac) can export your list of feeds as an OPML file. This is an open file format for feed lists, and pretty much every RSS app on the market can import it. On iOS, open the settings (gear icon), scroll down to the bottom and tap "Export Feed List...". On the Mac, use the "Export Subscriptions..." item in the File menu.
What are some alternative apps you can recommend?
One of the most popular options on iOS and OS X is Reeder — the developer has announced that it will support a variety of alternative backends.
On the iPad, Mr. Reader is a great option with lots of power user features. The next update will also support different sync services.
All-time favorite NetNewsWire has also just released a very promising beta of their 4.0 release (OS X).
If you're looking for a web app, you might want to take a look at Feed Wrangler. ($19/year with free native apps) or Feedly.
Finally, GigaOM has put together a comprehensive list of alternatives in this article.
Can I still download NewsRack?
If you have purchased NewsRack before, you should be able to download it from the "Purchases" list in the App Store. On the Mac, simply click on the "Purchases" tab at the top of the App Store window. On iOS, you can get to the list of your purchases from the "Updates" tab. Make sure that you're logged in with the same iTunes account that you made the purchase with.
I bought NewsRack recently. Can I get a refund?
If you've purchased NewsRack after March 1st (2 weeks before Google's announcement), you can get a refund. Please send a copy of your iTunes receipt and a valid PayPal address to email@example.com. Please note that it is technically not possible for app developers to credit your iTunes account directly.