Android app review: Mother Feed

John Walton
Cell Phone Editor
Published: March 26, 2009

I've never been a social website junkie. Well, that is if you discount user-submitted news sites. I only got into Facebook about six months ago, and thought it beat the baggy, sagging pants off of MySpace. I jumped on when right it became "the New Facebook," so I had nothing to complain about - unlike millions of other loyal users.

I tend to roll with changes at websites because the landscape evolves so quickly that websites must adapt. It leads to cool surprises. Facebook's latest reincarnation however, may be a bit drastic. It's losing the characteristics that make it unique - not just growing to meet users' needs. But I probably don't need to tell any of you that. Still, huge friend lists are the norm, and confirming that you actually know somebody seems little more than troublesome nag-screen. So maybe it is appropriate that they are adopting the tools and techniques of sites designed for mass communication. How else can they compete?

Anyway, I've gone looking for some alternatives recently, and one day not too long ago, the Mother Feed icon turned up in the Market. I had never used friendfeed before, but I knew what the program was for based on the font and logo color. I set up my account and started to explore. Being new to this site, I might miss some things that old-timers consider required functionality. But I've tested everything I can see on the site in Mother Feed, and it seems practical to me.

First of all, I like lists. It makes sense for IMs, and it makes sense for micro-blogging and link sharing. Mother Feed doesn't allow you to add or remove people from your lists, but it's organized according the way you've set them up on the site. Rooms are a great feature as well. In fact, while checking out this app for review, I'm becoming a fan of friendfeed. Not only is the web experience unique, but there's a free client out their that offers at least read-access for all of the web features.

Mother Feed has five tabs - Home, List, Rooms, Me, and Account. The options are simple. There is no long-press, and the context-sensitive menu key never offers anything beyond post, refresh, logout, and about. But the interface is clean, the content is well-organized, and posted photos are scaled to the G1's screen size.

I could complain about the inability to add rooms, move friends from one list to another, etc. But how often do you really need to do that stuff? Besides, it's free! For those as clueless as myself, friendfeed can be linked to your Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Amazon, and a few other accounts. It's definitely worth your time to take it for a spin.

Verdict: Thumbs up.

Products mentioned