NetNewsWire 4.0

Black Pixel has finally shipped NetNewsWire 4.0 for Mac — and an all-new iOS app, and a new sync service. The apps are solid, and so far the syncing is working flawlessly and quickly for me.

But, I have some concerns. First, I think the prices are too low: $10 for the Mac app; $4 for the iPhone app; and the syncing service is free. I don’t see how that’s sustainable.

Second, Black Pixel has simplified so much, they’ve removed a lot of what made NetNewsWire NetNewsWire. Let Apple News and Flipboard be the simple news readers — I think the opportunity in today’s world for a non-free Mac RSS reader is at the high-end.

Michael Tsai:

It still has the “lite” feature set, nothing like my beloved NetNewsWire 3. There are no smart folders. There’s no meaningful AppleScript support. It doesn’t support the system share menu.

One can argue that most people don’t use smart folders, and few people script apps with AppleScript — but that’s exactly why there’s an opportunity for a paid app that does support such things. This is why BBEdit has so many esoteric features. This is why apps from Omni and Panic have esoteric features, and in Omni’s case lots of customization options.

Friday, 4 September 2015