Enjoy Some Cappuccino While Reading the News on Your Mac

If you use Safari 6 as your default browser, then you know that it no longer supports RSS feeds. That means, you’ll need to use another application for reading your favorite blogs. So you have two choices: use another browser that supports RSS or download an app.

Unfortunately, there aren’t many RSS readers to choose from inside the Mac App Store; most of them are not free and many of them have pretty bad ratings. Every since my favorite RSS reader for Mac went from free to a paid app, I’ve been looking for a viable replacement – preferably free. So I decided to give Cappuccino a try.

Even though the average rating of Cappuccino is pretty embarrassing (1.5 stars), I was impressed with the look of it. Plus I really like that it syncs with Google Reader because there are quite a few readers that don’t. So is Cappuccino a worthy RSS reader or are the reviewers valid in their bad ratings? Let’s take a look.

As per usual, you have to download Cappuccino from the Mac App Store. When you open it for the first time, you’ll be prompted to sign into your Google Reader account. Once you do, the magic begins and you’ll see your RSS feeds appearing.

Cappuccino Settings Menu Options

By default, Cappuccino only pulls in 50 feeds, but you can change this in the settings. If you’re like me, there are always 1000+ items in your Google Reader account. Luckily, you can pull in up to 2000 feeds in Cappuccino.

While we’re talking about settings, there’s a few other things that you can do here. For starters, you access settings from the top of the left column in Cappuccino. Your options here are as follows:

  • Disable notifications – to be used if you don’t want to know about new feed items; otherwise you’ll get Growl notifications.
  • Refresh – forces a manual refresh.
  • Refresh Time – changes how often Cappuccino automatically refreshes; choose between never, 5 minutes, 10 minutes or 30 minutes.
  • Max Feeds – changes how many feed items to pull in; choose between 50 feeds, 100 feeds, 200 feeds, 500 feeds, 1000 feeds or 2000 feeds.
  • Log out and Quit – for when you’re done reading and want to quit the app.

So now that you have your feeds pulled into Cappuccino, navigating and reading through your RSS feeds is pretty standard.

With Cappuccino’s three column setup, you have your feed sources in the first column, feed items with titles and excerpts in the second column and the content in the third column. The second and third columns are also re-sizable if you need more space for your content or feed items.

Cappuccino Three Column Setup

I do like the second (middle) column’s setup because there’s a search bar at the top. I love being able to search through my feeds for specific keywords and topics. You can also sort items by: all, read, unread, starred, today or older. I prefer to only display my unread items, so I’m happy to see this as an option.

However, I don’t like the fact that items are automatically marked as read after a few seconds of clicking on them. I prefer to mark items as read manually. However, you can easily mark an item as unread by right clicking on it and selecting “mark as unread” from the menu.

When reading feed items, you can view a cleaned up version (with a look similar to readability) or view the original source with the built-in browser. This is a nice touch and saves you from having to use an external browser.

What would an RSS reader be without sharing options? Yes, Cappuccino has them. You can share items by mail or on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. From the share menu you can also open the item in your browser and star the item.

Cappuccino Share Menu

As you can see, it’s a bit limited with the sharing options, but at least it gives you the top three social networks. The share menu can be accessed at the top right corner of the application or by right clicking any feed item in the 2nd (middle) column.

Cappuccino is a simple RSS reader app for Mac that syncs with Google Reader and provides simple sharing options. With Cappuccino you get the basics and for many, that’s good enough. If you’re looking for something with more options and features, then you may not be satisfied with Cappuccino and will probably want to try a paid app like Mochaccino or Reeder.

I will say that from what I have seen so far, I don’t agree with the low ratings that Cappuccino has received. It does everything as advertised and it’s pretty stylish. I’d definitely recommend Cappuccino as a companion to your morning news.

Have you used Cappuccino or do you use it now as your RSS feed reader? If so, what are your thoughts on it? What is your preferred RSS reader for Mac?