I have to admit I'm not sure how I'll react to the next version of RSS Bandit but I'm honestly curious to find out. Not a sentiment you hear much so let me explain...
I used RSS Bandit for a long time and was happy with it but eventually Google Reader became good enough and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to access my feeds from anywhere. So I switched. Then recently RSS Bandit creator Dare Obasanjo announced he'd be integrating the ability to sync with Google Reader into the next version of RSS Bandit.
You might be thinking this is a no brain-er at this point and maybe it is. But there's some hesitation on my part.
The thing is, for me (and I think a lot of other people), feed reading is the first task where I've successfully moved completely to a web based solution. Sure I use Gmail but for my important e-mail I still use Outlook. Same with Calendars, Word Processing and everything else. But Google Reader has become my one and only reader and I'm relatively happy.
So the questions is: Once you get accustomed to a web interface is there any need for the extra bells and whistles? I know RSS Bandit has more features but at the same time I've never felt like I was missing out on things because I use Google Reader. So, as of right now, there really isn't a big draw for me to go back to it.
Which brings us to the macro question of it all: If I, with my love of computer features, don't switch back what does that say for your average computer user once they make the move to web based?
I honestly don't know the answers to that question but I think it reflects on the debate between desktop apps and web based ones. If a good Desktop app can't lure users back to that approach than that is the beginning of the end for them in general. The web offers a lot of compelling things that desktop apps can't offer so if the desktop can't utterly dominate in its area of strength than what hope does it have for the future?
Now the truth is that this debate will probably become less and less relevant as Flash matures and technologies like Silverlight arise to bridge the gap between the Desktop and the Web. But right now I think there are a lot of little programmers with niche products trying to decide between continuing on with their existing Desktop approach or moving to a web based development model.
For those folks I think the question of switching boils down to "will my users miss the desktop model and go with one of my competitors?" For them I think the question above is a very important one.