Not sure when the update occurred, but we came across the updated SpringWidgets RSS Reader as we were researching for another unrelated project. The last time we reviewed the widget, it was a pretty straight forward RSS reader with the ability to customize the header via a partnership between SpringWidgets and FeedBurner.
Since then, (it is completely possible we missed this feature set during the last review) the SpringWidgets RSS Reader has added in-widget support for audio (MP3) and video (FLV) podcast feeds with playback. What this means is that the feeds are displayed as usual, but now you can actually playback the audio or video directly from within the widget via a built-in player.
In addition to the new audio/video player, you can add a custom branding banner without having to utilize FeedBurner. There are also a few more customization options, like a color chooser for the frame.
Using the generic RSS reader is great. However, if you are a publisher and would like your own personalized and branded widget to distribute, you can use the ExpressWidgets feature. ExpressWidgets steps users easily through the process of creating a customized/personalized widget and automatically adds the widget to the SpringWidgets widget gallery.
Now, if they only had widget analytics or did we miss that too?
Browsing around SpringWidgets also revealed quite a few new widgets. While it is still a relatively small widget gallery, it is growing and improving.
Note: The SpringWidgets RSS Reader can support multiple feeds in one widget. We used two widgets to better illustrate each example.