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IT & Systems Management

New AOL Reader product teased just days before Google Reader's shutdown

Once-mighty America Online appears to be working on a new RSS reader product, with about a week to go before Google pulls the plug on its own Reader.

"All your favorite websites, in one place," the product's landing page proclaims. The reader is currently in private beta; people can either request an invitation online or enter a code to use the service.

AOL Reader will launch and become available to everyone on Monday, a spokeswoman said. On the AOL Twitter feed, a Vine video was posted Friday afternoon depicting the landing page on a computer monitor. A series of sticky notes were pasted on top of the screen. "Yes, the rumors are true," one of them said.

No other information about the product could be gleaned from the AOL site or obtained from the company.

Besides AOL, a number of other companies have been promoting their own RSS reader services since Google announced in March that it would be shutting down Reader and some other products by July 1.

In its announcement, the company said it needed to focus on new opportunities, rather than spread itself "too thin and lack impact."

One of the other reader players is Feedly, which earlier this week switched on its own RSS API (application programming interface) to let users transfer over their existing feeds to Feedly's own back end.

Digg is also working on a Google Reader replacement, which is slated to go live next week, according to a company blog post.

Google Reader launched in 2005 to help people stay on top of their favorite websites using RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

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