Make Your New Tab Page the Only Page You Need with OneFeed

Everyone wants something different to happen when they hit that little “New Tab” icon or press Ctrl+T. Chrome already has a pretty nifty ‘speed dial’ page with recently visited or favourite sites. Some of us want a version of that on steroids, like with Speed Dial 2.

Consider what you usually start a new tab for. It’s either to check one of your social networks (that post on Facebook, the snarky comment on Twitter or what your friend just ate on Instagram), see the latest updates in some of your favourite sites, or just check a file in your Dropbox or Google Drive.

OneFeed wants to put all of that data in a one-glance spot when you hit that New Tab button. It’s ingenious, and yet, I really don’t know why no one thought of this before. After using it for a little over two weeks, now when I hit Ctrl+T, I no longer rush to type out an address in the URL bar — I actually look at the page so that I’m saved typing or a click.

And there’s a lot more awesomeness under the hood.

Onefeed-notifications

Accounts & Privacy

Apps like OneFeed are dependent on the user connecting his social and other accounts to the service, so there are obvious privacy concerns. Here are a few things you need to know about OneFeed:
-All data is kept anonymous at all times.
-You don’t need to create a separate OneFeed account.
-The app tracks your browsing to figure out your favourite sites.
-You need to specifically unlick and delete information if you aren’t going to use OneFeed.
-Unlink social networks at https://secure.onefeed.me/v2/logout/facebook (or replace Facebook with any other social network you would like to remove).
-Delete your information from Onefeed at this link.

It currently connects to your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ & Gmail, Instagram, Dropbox and Google Drive.

OneFeed is basically divided into two panes: Home and News Reader. It will always remember your last choice and display that pane by default.

Home

The Home part of OneFeed has a speed dial where you can add up to eight dials on one page. These can be direct web URLs, apps from the Chrome web store, or files from your Google Drive or Dropbox. Adding the shortcut is a simple process, and you can edit or remove your dials as you see fit.

Onefeed-Home

Access Your Favourite Sites & Check Out Updates In The Home Screen

If eight is too small a number for you, OneFeed will create a second Home page when you reach that limit. You can also create a new Home page at any time by right-clicking in the blank space and choosing the option in the context menu.

Under the dial, you will see a horizontal row of tiles. These tiles show the latest updates from sources that matter to you: your social networks or the websites you frequent. Think of it as a heads-up display.

News Reader

The second part of OneFeed is the News Reader, which you can access by clicking on the right or left edge of the screen. This aggregates content from different sources to give you a quick snapshot of what’s happening on the web that you would be interested in. There are two sub-tabs here: News and Social.

Onefeed-social

All Your Social Feeds In One Easy-To-Browse Window

The Social tab shows you the latest from your social networks, arranged in a Pinterest-like grid. On the left, you’ll find options to filter this social feed by network, such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Funnily, even after asking for Google+ authorization, posts from that network never showed up for me.

OneFeed-news

The News Feed Is An RSS Reader On Steroids

The News tab has all the happenings from various websites that you often visit, again arranged in a grid. The sidebar gives you options to filter by categories such as mix, breaking news, business, sports, tech, entertainment, food, etc. OneFeed will keep auto-adding sites here, but you can also manually add, edit or delete sources. Essentially, this is an RSS reader on steroids.

Also, any of the tiles can be quickly shared through OneFeed itself – a nice touch, that.

The Constants

There are four aspects of the screen that remain constant between Home and News Reader.

The top of the page hosts a search bar. This search bar can let you quickly run a Google web search for any topic of your choice, but it also hooks up to your Dropbox and Google Drive to search within those virtual cloud services and your Facebook to quickly find a contact. Now, the Facebook part worked like a charm but the cloud storage service didn’t work quite right for me — often, OneFeed wouldn’t find a file that I knew was there. But it’s cool that the developers have this feature and we can only hope it gets better with time.

Onefeed-search

Universal Search For Your Facebook Contacts and Dropbox/Google Drive Files

OneFeed claims to also serve you notifications from your networks, such as a new email or Facebook message, or a birthday reminder from Facebook. They appear in the form of small orbs with either a Facebook friend’s face or the Gmail icon. The birthday reminders worked flawlessly for me, but email and Facebook message notifications never appeared on my screen after repeated tests.

At the bottom-right corner are two tiny left and right arrows, which let you change the background wallpaper in OneFeed.

Finally, the top-left corner has the OneFeed icon, which also serves as the Menu button where you can choose to edit news, add services, or just sign out to protect your privacy when you aren’t using Chrome. When you’re back, sign in to any one service and OneFeed will auto-login to the rest.

Conclusion

Overall, I couldn’t be more pleased with OneFeed and it’s sitting pretty as my New Tab page now. I can’t even imagine going back. It has saved me an incredible amount of time by being an all-in-one aggregator for social networks and RSS feeds, and it looks darn pretty doing so.

I highly recommend OneFeed to anyone and everyone, and it can only get better once the search function is tweaked to universally search all your social networks and cloud storage services.


Summary

OneFeed puts all your favourite web content in one place – the new tab in Chrome. Along with a smart speed dial, get quick updates on your social networks, favourite websites and notifications of events like birthdays.

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