Design Review – Feedly Mini v4

There has been a lot of requests to make the feedly mini toolbar available on Google Chrome and Safari. So we are working on a new iteration of the concept. Here are some early design concepts.

One of our design goals for this iteration is to try to make the toolbar as un-intrusive as possible. So in its ambiant state, the toolbar has been reduced to a single button located at the bottom right of the page.

When the user clicks on the feedly mini icon, a panel appears with 3 main sections: A first section to allow the users to subscribe to the current website, a second section which shows the best recent unread articles for the current website and a third section which allows the user to recommend, save or share the current article. Here is what it looks like:

If you have comments or suggestions you would like to see integrated into the design, please post them as comments or send us an email (team …

Author: @feedly

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71 thoughts on “Design Review – Feedly Mini v4”

  1. An extra click is an extra click, I’d rather see it popup as a “hover over” state, better yet, keyboard shortcuts. Design-wise it looks good. Perhaps add an option to pick a corner of your screen, or hide it (not disable!) and operate only by shortcuts.

      1. Well, the Firefox version is different from the one you show here. So, if Renan’s question meant : “Is *this version* gonna be available for Firefox too ?”, please let me ask it again ;-)

        1. Ah I see. Then the answer is yes. The firefox version will be upgraded to v4 so that we have a consistent experience across firefox, chrome and safari. Hope this clarifies.

  2. Two things I’d like to see:
    1) An option to disable the unread part of the new Mini-bar. There are times I’d just like to post to my wall news articles without all the extra clutter of the unread articles.

    2) Auto-Hide or 80% transparency fade for the button. There are some sites (i.e. Wikipedia) that use full page width, and the mini-bar tends to get in the way at the moment. Putting in a 2 second delay and letting me hover over it to get it back would eliminate that annoyance.

  3. I’m using Chrome so I’ve never seen this before. I visit Feedly for updates around 10 times a day at least, so a pop up tool such as this will be really good. I do hope that there’s going to be complete control over it though. There are some sources that I want to see constant updates from, but others that are enough to watch once a day and if their all appear in the pop-up mini feeds it’s going to create only clutter.

  4. Please add the bar for Chrome!!!
    Personally I’ll disable the second part, the best recent unread articles, it’s extensive
    I have a dude the save for later button works for non subscripted resources? Thanks.

    1. Hi Mingue. Yes. We will put an option to allow users to not include the top 3 articles section. Yes: you can save links to articles you do not subscribe to.

    1. Hi Tommaso. I think that we will go with Sable’s suggestion: show the icon at opacity 80% for the first two seconds and then dim it down to 10-20%. Yes for the keyboard shortcut.

  5. I love the feedly mini, but I don’t think your new design makes much sense. If you have to click the icon to activate it there is no reason to actually put the icon in the page it could just as well be part of the browser chrome. In fact I think that making feedly mini part of the browser chrome would be a big improvement in general. Although the feedly mini is quite unobtrusive it still interferes with the underlying site.

    1. Hi Carl,
      You are raising a good point. We explored the option of moving the button to the chrome but 1) there is not way to have a bottom to the chrome consistently across firefox, chrome and safari and 2) remaining on the page seems consistent with how the email, twitter and next generation sharing dialogs operate. So we decided to keep mini on the page and instead focus on making it as un-intrusive as possible. Once, we have a running/testable prototype, would you be open to trying it out and see if the tradeoff intrusiveness/value is acceptable?

  6. I am not quite sure about the black transparent background. Lots of pages use the black colour as “system feedback” e.g. when you add a post to ReadItLater, etc. Why not use the white layer with a grey border as you use on your feedly page?

  7. Long overdue. Have always wished for more configuration options for the firefox version; always seems too obtrusive (though useful). Keyboard shortcuts are a must!

  8. Hi. I think the current version of Feedly Mini is perfect. Why change it? Ok, you got some good feedback here. But please leave an option to stay with the current version. It love this one-click access to Twitter and Feedly without mouseover-delay. Keyboard-Shortcuts, though, would be great.
    BTW: Is there a way to prevent categories to appear on the cover page?

  9. Second the call for not requiring a click or having the option to select it via a keyboard shortcut. I am only really looking to use the mini bar to share or save content.. so keyboard shortcuts to directly activate those would be great.

    Entirely selfish I know ;)

  10. General Design Suggestion: I really would like to have options for link color and topic. I’m not happy with ‘green’ and ‘blue’ ;(

    But thanks so far for the develpment of feedly.


  11. Something I’d really like to see is a Facebook Like-button in addition to the Facebook Share-button. Another thing that would be really cool but might be hard to do is if certain sites would have extra buttons. For example, if you’re visiting YouTube, the feedly-bar could include a YouTube-like button, and a “Save to Favorites” button. Oh, and finally, I’d love to see buttons for reddit, digg and stumbleupon, preferably their interactive buttons where you can see how many other people have liked the link, and not just a link with an static icon. The reddit interactive button for example allows you to upvote a link without leaving the page or even seeing a popup as long as it has already been submitted by someone else.

  12. 1) I think you are making the right choice going with something that is unobtrusive as the page loads. I may only care about using mini on 1 in 5 or 10 pages. 2) Keyboard shortcuts would be an awesome way to interact with mini, but please make the shortcut user configurable. 3) While hover does save a click it could be very annoying. Not a big fan of things happening when I hover, I am already there with the mouse, and clicking is not that big of a chore.

    I am just anxious for mini in any form in Chrome. I never use FF anymore, so it has been a long, long time since I have used mini. I say release it now. ;)

  13. It’s freaking annoying. I can’t turn it off.
    regardless of how many times I clicked on the settings to turn it off
    it comes back after a reboot.


  14. I find hover can be annoying (“Damnit! I’m trying to click there!”); maybe give a choice in options to turn hover off.

  15. Hi, I haven’t worked my way through the comments, but I have one suggestion.

    Please allow this menu to pop up when I click the Feedly extension icon on my Google Chrome toolbar.
    I don’t want it hovering at the bottom of a page or anything like that.

    I’m looking forward to the reintroduction of Feedly Mini.


    1. Hi John. We actually explored make the pop up linked to the feedly icon. The challenge is that 1) the behavior would not be replicable across browsers and 2) it would mean that you would have to click twice to access your feedly digest page which has been a big NO NO when we did some usability tests.

      1. the bottom button worked fine for me in Firefox. i’m sure you’ll implement it elegantly in chrome as well.
        let me know when there’s a beta that i can try. thanks for the reply.

      2. I appreciate the usability concern, but maybe we can make that an option, too? I find it annoying that the extension is being developed from the “greatest common denominator” approach. Make the Chrome one take advantage of Chrome features, and the other browsers can deal with it. I find it rewarding when an extension developer cares enough to program for the platform, instead of just trying to code something that happens to run on multiple platforms.

        The idea is nice, but it does seem a little redundant when you compare the idea to a pop-over on the extension’s button.

  16. Actually I prefer the old mini bar maybe it’s because I don’t like the new icon and moreover this second section is simply too big. Rolling it out and in would be a bit tiring. It would be much better if you just put in that section icons only.
    Or just make it possible to choose some design versions of mini bar in preferences, so that people could choose the look that is now or the single button instead.

    1. Hi Lanooz. You point about being able to customize is an important one. Our goal is to get a basic version out first and then listen to what customization knobs people want and try to implement the most popular ones.

  17. Please add this to Chrome soon. I used to be a diehard Firefox fan, but the memory hangs just kept getting to be too much. I have slowly been transitioning to Chrome, and prefer it now. Not having this Feedly feature on Chrome is one of the few remaining reasons to switch back and forth.

    Yes, the V4 is neat. Soon please! :-)

    Thanks for all the work on this, Feedly is the best feature of my browsing now.

    1. Yes: A lot of people have been asking us to make mini available on Chrome. This is what is driving us to try to get this thread initiated. Thank you for your support!

  18. Not being one to repeat myself or what has already been said :-) I will direct you to the comment above made by James Schipper and simply say: “What he said!” :-D

  19. Whatever design you come up with, and the present one looks good, I can’t wait having the mini available in Chrome and Safari. I also hope there will be no longer an issue with the email function which for some reason doesn’t work for me now as there seems to be some conflict with GMail or Google Toolbar functionality for emailing. Haven’t found out the reason and not gotten any feedback either. The Mini is an essential tool for me.

  20. Will it still pop up search results automatically? I discover a lot of good feed reader content while simply searching the web.

    Personally I love the current firefox version (the only change I would make is to have a button for “add this site to the Exclude List”). It’s not the prettiest thing on earth but it’s massively functional. My request, although I know you guys love “keep it simple” would be to allow the user to specify which services show up as “one-click” on the toolbar. I use the google share button and facebook share buttons fairly often and would gladly give up the screen real-estate for one-click access.

    Additional request regardless of the ultimate design choice… Please add the ability to quickly add a site to the feedly mini Exclude List. Love you guys!

  21. I loved this tool in Firefox. Definitely miss it when I’m working in Chrome. I’m with the camp to have it expanded slightly by default, though. I would never have noticed or clicked it in FF if it was just a hovering icon.

  22. how about feedly for the browser with the most market share. this discrimination has to end. first I was told we are a small team but yet there are more then just one browser that is supported now. SMH. I don’t like have two browser open all day

  23. I would forget the mini icon which to me is worthless… if this thing doesn’t get sorting alphabetically right pretty soon, I’m moving on to something else. Fix what is broken, not what is not.

  24. The main reason I use feedly is because of the “Do you want to know more?”-like feature the current feedly mini toolbar provides, that, in this design, I think is completly absent, because It shows just unread items from the current website, and the current toolbar shows information from other sources related to the topic of the page I’m reading.

  25. Page real-estate is sacrosanct in my book.

    I think the design is fine but I don’t wan’t browser services to start using the page.
    I particularly like Chrome for its absence of ‘chrome’ – oh the irony. Particularly the ability to save pages as ‘applications’ with a lot more guff stripped away. Placing third party icons on-page would violate a very good design principle.

    I would prefer you placed this functionality in your extension button. The “Yet Another Google Bookmark”, “Wiki Companion” , “Google Mail Checker Plus”, and the “Google Sidewiki” extensions are all excellent examples of this design approach.

    I have a select line of extension buttons I have selected to provide additional content-based and interactive functionality to my on-line activities.

    Why can’t the interface you have designed be a slide down? If people then want a one-click load of the feedly page there is the regular old bookmark – works just fine.

    Of course, by the posts here, I realise I am in the minority. I certainly hope this is an option I can disable or it will mean switching to a different reader. And I really do like feedly.

  26. Hi,
    The toolbar looks fine. But better to have the icon on chrome omnibar like subscribe to feed icon. Pages on which the toolbar is relevant will show the icon on omnibar.


  27. I know that this is a little “off-topic”, but I still think it pertinent to what we are all doing here; the Interwebs are starting to report that because of Twitter and Facebook, RSS Feeds are going the way of the Dodo.
    Now, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I use the two together, as I simply cannot read every single Tweet that comes through my Friends’ timeline. So, what I miss on Twitter, I catch up with using my RSS feeds.
    I used to use Viigo on my BlackBerry to get my RSS fix, but with the advent of new Apps like BerryReader, Feeds and Unread, us BB users now have some very nice RSS readers to help us keep up to date on what’s important to us. BTW, any chance of a Feedly App for BlackBerry? That would be SO sweet! ;-)
    Anyway, the point I am trying to make here, in my own meandering way, is that Feedly is the kind of Application/Aggregator that makes pulling all those RSS feeds into one cohesive whole very easy and I have never actually “enjoyed” using an aggregator as much as I have since stumbling upon Feedly. With Feedly around to make keeping up with our hundreds of feeds very easy and enjoyable, I don’t think RSS is going anywhere soon.
    Thanks folks and keep up the good work!!

  28. Concern:
    Some sites have design elements that place a div in the bottom-right corner of the screen using absolute positioning. I’ve seen this result in minor conflict with the current mini-bar for firefox already.

    Possible solution:
    Ability to choose what corner the feedly logo shows up in.

  29. @Edwin K – I don’t see feedly mini in Chrome at all. Am I missing something? For me the gMail integration doesn’t work in Firefox 3.6.9

  30. » nice look-and-feel;
    » +1 to comments calling for open-on-hover, hide (not disable), and keyboard shortcuts;
    » roll it out! I love the FF feedly mini, and desperately want the same functionality in Chrome/Safari. Without the mini, skimming twitter/facebook for interesting links is completely unmanageable for me — “save for later” and “email” are lifesavers.

    Glad to see you iterating this most excellent product.

  31. Another thing I’d really like to see is Feedly Mini sending back “read” status to feedly/reader. Many times I’ll read an article I found while browsing and then go into feedly and the same article is at the top of the Digest page and unread. Is Mini supposed to do this in V3?

  32. i attempted to select my category choices for your page by clicking “x” thinking this would select the topic rather than de select it. Once i realized my mistake, i found no easy way to change the selections. Either i missed something on the resulting page, or you have me trapped. how do i start over? Thanks

  33. Clip to Evernote integration?
    But with everybody’s suggestions, this is becoming the all-in-one share and social plugin to end them all.

  34. When will the new feedly mini be implemented? I miss it so much, it was much comfortable to share posts with it.

  35. would like to see Feedly showing the news in the way TweetBird extension for Chrome showing tweets. So you can bee all the time updated, and respond directly from the mini extension (safe for later, hide, tweet…)

  36. I love the new Mini Feedly for Chrome, though I would like to know whether there is a feed I can add (or have already added) in the current web page at a glance. Maybe the icon can change color to indicate that: green = you can add a new feed from this page; blue = you have already added a feed from this page.

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