Metro RSS Reader: Free and open source Metro Application for Windows 8

Those that follow me on twitter know that for couple of weeks I am working on a RSS/Atom news feed reader application framework, it is based on the Metro User interface format for Windows 8. It is a completely free and open source application available from Codeplex.com

http://metrorssreader.codeplex.com

If you are on twitter, you can follow it on http://twitter.com/MetroRssReader

The app uses slightly modified version of Visual Studio 11’s Grid layout template for building Metro apps. I initially built this app on a weekend to play with some new features of Metro Applications like Navigation, Charms and other WinRT APIs like the new async/await keyword, Windows.Web.Syndication, Windows.Storage namespaces.

The app is already reviewed by Windows8Freeware.com and I also showed this app to developers during the recent Windows 8 Devcamp organized by Microsoft Gulf.

How it works?

HomescreenSmall Once installed the app can be launched from the Windows 8 Home Screen like other Metro applications. The application comes with a default RSS feed which can be changed from the Application Bar. Start screen lists All items in the feed and clicking on any item takes you to a detail screen, on this screen from the App bar users can choose to Share this post via Charms and launch browser to read more.

The main view also links to Categories view which groups items in one or more categories.

I also did a quick screencast for current downloadable version and published it on Youtube, you can watch it below.


Other features

Clicking on category name from the main view takes you to category details view containing a list of items.

Using Search Charm you can lookup posts matching your search keyword.

Current Status

You can download the current stable release from the project’s homepage on Codeplex.com, it lacks some new features that we added recently, I will publish a newer version soon.

And I have also teamed up with my good friend Hammad Rajjoub and together we are working on many new features, some of them are listed below but we’d love to hear from you, so please give us your valuable comments and suggestions.

You can reach us from the comments section of this blog or engage in Discussions on Codeplex.com

Roadmap

As said there are a number of exciting features planned for this app.

Enable Multiple RSS/ATOM feeds

To be able to read news from multiple sources

Show Read/Unread items

To be able to quickly jump to the Unread items

Save chosen Categories,feeds and others in Roaming settings

Where a user logs into Windows 8 from another PC or a tablet using his Live ID, the app will remember these settings across all devices.

Offline capabilities

For a disconnected or occasionally connected client, users can load newsfeed and be able to read them offline

Background Transfer

Load new items when the application is not running

Live Tile notifications

We’ll add notifications for new items in Live Tiles on Windows 8 Home screen so users don’t have to launch and click Refresh

These are some of the features we are working on, if you have installed Windows 8 Consumer preview we would like you to use it and let us know what you think.

Update: Here’s a video recording of me speaking about it at Microsoft Gulf Windows 8 Dev camp

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