Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

GearDiary Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

I am still lamenting the decision Google made to kill off Google Reader.  While I am generally ok with Feedly, I am actually in the same boat I was with Google Reader when I use another service like Feedly.  If Feedly goes away, then I am stuck yet again.  So I began searching for other alternatives and had a friend suggest something called Tiny Tiny RSS.

Tiny Tiny RSS has all of the features Google Reader has and more.

Tiny Tiny RSS Web Interface

GearDiary Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

The web interface looks a lot like Google Reader.  It lets me star things for later, and with the help of some plugins to TTRSS (Abbreviated, so I don’t have to type it out every time!), I can also share articles to Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Google+.  TTRSS is written using a lot of the same programs WordPress uses, including Apache, PHP and MySQL.

The Tiny Tiny RSS Android App

GearDiary Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

There is an Android app that you can sync up to the web-based version on the server.  It has all the features of the web app, but they are scaled down for the mobile interface.  The Tiny Tiny RSS app also scales up to Android tablets as well; Tiny Tiny RSS  is free for 7 days and can be unlocked for $1.99.

GearDiary Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

Can I get my Google Reader feeds into Tiny Tiny RSS?

GearDiary Tiny Tiny RSS: DIY Android Google Reader Replacement

Yes!  All you have to do is get the subscriptions.xml file in the Zip file that Google Takeout provides and import it on the Feeds tab, OPML option in preferences on your TTRSS site.  The above screenshot is what it looked like for me.  When I did this it imported all of my feeds with zero issues.  It even maintained the folders I set up in Google Reader.

Tiny Tiny RSS: Good News / Bad News

The bad news here, is that if you aren’t a server geek or programmer then setting this up on your own may not be easily done. However, if you know a Linux geek, then you can bet he or she is probably already looking into it and may even have it set up already.  If you know that Linux geek really well, then maybe he or she can set you up with an account!  😉

Honestly though, if you have ever set up a blog with WordPress on a host, then you can likely do the install on this yourself.  My hope is that for non-technical users some hosting providers will start offering Tiny Tiny RSS as an option.  I had the whole thing up and running on a server in about 30 minutes, and that was with all of the prereqs installed ahead of time.  Lifehacker has a great article on setting this up; so if you want to try it, then I would start there if you are new to this kind of thing.

The really good part of this is now you are not beholden to Google, Feedly, or anyone else but yourself (or your helpful Linux geek) if you choose to set this up.  Tiny Tiny RSS is Open Source software, which means if it doesn’t do something you want you can change if you know how; that’s always a good thing in my book.

MSRP: Free as it’s open source but there may be a cost for hosting if you choose to host it.

What I Like: Does all Google Reader does and more; Not dependent on any service other than ones you pay for

What Needs Improvement: For me?  Nothing.  For non-technical users, I hope someone takes this and starts a service, as  It’s really useful; No iOS client

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About the Author

Joel McLaughlin
Joel is a consultant in the IT field and is located in Columbus, OH. While he loves Linux and tends to use it more than anything else, he will stoop to running closed source if it is the best tool for the job. His techno passions are Linux, Android, netbooks, GPS, podcasting and Amateur Radio.