Here’s a quick heads-up about a new (well, somewhat new) desktop RSS reader called NewsFlash, which is gearing up for its first stable release.

The app is described as being the “spiritual successor” to the great (but-never-quite-perfect) FeedReader, a feature-packed GTK RSS app for the Linux desktop that I have covered in the past.

Like its predecessor, NewsFlash is designed to be used with an existing web-based RSS feed service. It can be used “locally” too if you don’t use one (or do, but don’t care about cross-platform syncing and so on).

But it’s there that the similarities end. NewsFlash is an entirely new app built in Rust and running on an entirely new codebase.

“[NewsFlash] combines all the advantages of web based services […] with everything you expect from a modern desktop program: Desktop notifications, fast search and filtering, tagging, handy keyboard shortcuts and having access to all your articles as long as you like,” states the project’s Gitlab page.

And those features are numerous. The app can be set to check for new articles in the background (though, as a modern GNOME app it lacks a ‘system tray’ icon); there are ample article sorting options, and support for feed folders.

These and other features of NewsFlash include:

  • Sync with third-party RSS feed service FeedBin, Miniflux & Fever
  • Can fetch/check for new articles in the background
  • Create custom feed tags and categories
  • Various article sorting options, including ‘newest first’
  • Built-in content parser(s)
  • ‘Star’ articles for easy access
  • Keyboard shortcuts
  • Dark mode support
  • Responsive UI

I rely on desktop feed reader apps to keep tabs on the multitude of projects, repos, blogs, and developer postings needed to feed this site (and thus you) with fresh content regularly.

Overall I prefer the simplicity of Feeds (formerly GNOME Feeds, sometimes referred to as gFeeds) to NewsFlash. While the former isn’t as featured as the latter it feels leaner in use, renders posts cleaner, and yields to convention more.

But if NewsFlash ever adds Feedly support I’d adopt it in a heart beat!

One small note: this app uses its own built-in scraper to ‘fetch’ the content of blog posts so that you can read them in-app, without needing to use a browser. This is convenient. But be aware when reading our site (though this is true of others) you won’t be able to see in-article ‘elements’ such as info boxes, review boxes, image comparisons, image galleries, in-post callouts, themed Flatpak, Snap and other buttons, one-line article summaries, or pull quotes.

Install NewsFlash Feed Reader

NewsFlash is free, open source software. You can browse source code for the project on Gitlab (where you can also file bug reports and contribute code).

To install NewsFlash on Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and other Linux distros you can use Flatpak, with the a release candidate version of the app available on Flathub:

View NewsFlash on Flathub

If you’re on Arch you can install the app from the AUR:

yay -S newsflash

That’s a short introduction to NewsFlash. Do try it out and let me (and the readers) know what you think of it in the comments section below.

#feedly #feedreader #gtk apps #rss