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Substack is building a reader app for newsletters

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‘I think the death of Google Reader was a big, sad thing,’ says Chris Best, CEO of Substack

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Substack, the hot subscription newsletter startup, is building a reader app to help people manage all of their newsletters in a single place.

That’s the word from Substack CEO Chris Best on this week’s episode of Decoder, The Verge’s new tech and business interview podcast. “Something that I really miss is proper reader apps, proper RSS readers. I think the death of Google Reader was a big, sad thing,” Best said.

“Something that we think about a lot is readers tell us, ‘Hey, I’m subscribed to six different Substacks now, and I want to read them all, and it sucks that they’re in my email inbox along with all my other stuff,’” Best added.

“‘Wouldn’t it be nice if there was one place where I could go and see all of these direct connections that I have, and that I’m paying for in many cases?’ That’s something that we’re keenly interested in.”

There’s been a signup page for something called Substack Inbox available for a few weeks now, billed as “a cozy new space for reading your newsletters.” Best wouldn’t elaborate further, but when asked what was next for Substack, he did say, “Check out the reader beta when it lands.”

It’s clear Substack has plans to do more for writers than just deliver emails and provide a payment system. You can listen to the entire conversation, which touched on everything from providing legal support for writers to content moderation, on Decoder.