Digg has announced that it’s planning to release a beta version of its RSS reader in June. The company also says it’s planning to charge for the final product, though exact pricing isn’t decided at this point.
The timing is good for Google Reader users that still haven’t found a replacement reader. Google has said it’ll shut down Reader on July 1st, so it should be to Digg’s benefit to give users access to an early version of its reader before they have to make a decision.
A couple weeks ago, Digg did another survey of the 18,000+ people that have volunteered to help provide feedback on Digg’s plans. This time, about 40 percent of the 8,600 responders said they’re willing to pay for a Google Reader replacement. Digg is taking that as a good sign:
Free products on the Internet don’t have a great track record. They tend to disappear, leaving users in a lurch. We need to build a product that people can rely on and trust will always be there for them. We’re not sure how pricing might work, but we do know that we’d like our users to be our customers, not our product.
Digg says it’s also planning to have “seamless sharing” via email and the most popular social networks — that’s a popular feature among survey takers. More than 75 percent use email to share links, while close to 60 percent share links via Facebook and Twitter.
Though social sharing is on the To Do list, other social features may be put off for future updates. Only 17 percent of Digg’s survey takers say they used Google Reader’s social features.
Digg also says it’s planning to support “read later” services like Pocket, Evernote and Instapaper.