flowreader new years

It’s been an awesome 2013 for us here at FlowReader as we put some major milestones under our belts on the product side and made changes that helped us take big steps forward as a team. We want to give a big thanks to all our users that have supported us through 2013 and given us a chance to keep growing as a project. Our team truly values your patience and support of FlowReader and want to make sure we continue to deliver on our promises in 2014.

Let me highlight some of the big events that have occurred throughout the year.

Adding RSS was a crucial product pivot.

About 3 months before Google’s announcement to retire Google Reader forever, our team made the decision to add RSS to FlowReader. Originally, we were an app that focused mainly on streamlining content posted on Facebook and Twitter. Our decision to add RSS proved to be key to our development as a service and has made it possible for us to further define our vision for the future. As a result, FlowReader has become (at least for the time being) a modern reader meant to help users balance all the sources of content available today and allow them easy access to all those resources.

Major milestone – we launched.

Back in June, we took one of our most important steps of the year. We launched FlowReader to the public and took our chances at a pretty crazy time in the RSS arena. Google Reader’s retirement at the start of July brought about a lot of changes in the reader environment and pushed us to step up our launch to coincide with the demise of the RSS mammoth. Since the addition of RSS to FlowReader was a fairly new decision, it was an amazing opportunity for us to rise to the challenge.

We were even lucky enough to be written about in some pretty cool places:

FlowReader Combines Your RSS Feeds and Social Feeds into One Webapp – Lifehacker

In A Saturated Market, Fledgling FlowReader Makes A Strong Push – The Social Times

FlowReader Combines RSS Feeds With Twitter, Facebook Feeds – The Digital Reader

Personalize Your News Feeds Online With FlowReader – Media Bistro (AppNewser)

FlowReader Makes It Easy to Transfer Google Reader Subscriptions – Free Technology for Teachers

Performance issues showed us we could overcome our first big setback.

One of the biggest triumphs of our year also brought about our biggest challenge. After the launch, we had an amazing rush of new visitors to FlowReader and as a result, we experienced some serious performance issues that caused service failures and slow loading times. Although it was a frustrating time for us, it was also exciting. It showed us that as a team we could work together to solve our problems with a lot of focus, open communication, and hard work.

New workflow to help tighten up our productivity.

Behind the scenes of our launch, the team also transformed and grew a lot over the year. A few of our amazing colleagues left for other opportunities, and we welcomed some new people on board. During the transition, we took the opportunity to create a more open network of communication to help us solve problems more efficiently and started holding regular demo meetings so that everyone was able to share their input and ideas about FlowReader.

We ended the year on a high note by launching a redesign.

In the months following our launch, we realized that FlowReader needed some changes inside and out. Thanks to our wonderful users, we received feedback and suggestions that helped us make some crucial changes and led us to launch a completely redesigned FlowReader. It was great place for us to end the year because it puts us in a position to start designing and building unique features as we head into 2014! We’ve already started working on some awesome new additions that will bring FlowReader to the next level as a project, and it will be really exciting for us to share them with you over the next year.

We hope your 2013 has been as fulfilling and rewarding as ours and thank you all for being part of it! To all of you, have an amazing start to your new year and don’t forget to have some fun as we all get ready to wipe the slate clean.

2014 is going to be great! Don’t forget to join us on Facebook or Twitter @flow_reader for news and updates in the new year.

From the entire FlowReader family – see you there :D!