RSS reader Feedly has shown there is plenty of life in the post-Google Reader apocalypse world after it introduced a paid-for Pro plan that brings a set of premium features, including in-feed search, to its users.

Feedly Pro — first spotted by Engadget — is available for $5 per month, although those looking to make a commitment and save some cash in the process can pay $45 for a year-long subscription. Feedly is also offering a $99 ‘lifetime’ plan, which is available on a first-come-first=serve basis to 5,000 punters.

The company says it will bring a range of features to Feedly Pro, which will initially include:

  • Article search: Search within your feedly feeds.
  • https: Add a layer of security to your feedly browsing.
  • Evernote: One-click save to any of  your Evernote notebooks.
  • Premium Support: Get bumped to the front of the support line.

Pro doesn’t mean an end to the free version of Feedly, as the company explains in the related FAQ:

Are you continuing to invest in the free version of feedly?
Definitely! We will continue to iterate and add new features to the free feedly. If anything, feedly pro makes us more sustainable and enables us to innovate faster.

A premium version of the service was mooted back in April, but many users appear surprised and/or disappointed by the announcement. That may be down to the growth in new Feedly customers who are unaware of prior plans, or the fact some features that were available in Google Reader (like search) are deemed to be premium and for paying customer only.

Feedly has emerged from Google’s closure of Reader as arguably the strongest contender to grab the RSS crown. Formerly a mobile-only service, it launched a cloud-based platform and Web version in June. Feedly had 4 million users prior to Google’s big announcement, but that number tripled to 12 million users, as of the end of May.

Other services fighting to capture the attention of RSS and news junkies include efforts from big names like Digg and AOL, as well as independents like Newsblur and NetNewsWire.

This weekend saw another contender throw its hat in the ring, belatedly, after lesser-known service The Old Reader reversed its decision to restrict its service to users that registered before Google Reader’s demise was revealed. The service will continue to be public thanks to the backing of an unnamed ‘‘corporate entity’ in the US which will provide resources to help it deal with the spike in users seeking a Reader replacement.

➤ Feedly: Feedly Pro

Headline image via Feedly