Google confirmed that the new store has gone live across the UK today. If you fire up the Play store on your your Nexus 7 or Nexus 10 you should now have access to Magazine subscriptions.
Google said: “You can shop a wide selection of titles, from cooking to technology, travel, fashion, sports, photography, and so much more. It’s never been easier to find a great read to enjoy on vacation, lounging at home or on your morning commute. Buy new issues or back issues, subscribe and get free 14 or 30-day trials, and customize your reading experience for Android tablet or phone.”
Google Play Magazines on the Nexus 7
The Play app allows you to choose single editions of the magazine, or if you are happy to commit, you can get a full on subscription too. The selection actually looks very good, given the poor choice of TV / films available in the Movie store this is a welcome surprise.
You’ll find them all neatly categorised into areas including cooking, technology, travel, fashion, sports, photography, etc. My favourite magazines were certainly there (for example Focus, PC Pro, etc) although I’m still not sold on the whole concept.
Trial subscriptions are also on offer, but I’m not sure I quite understand the value of a 14 day subscription to a monthly magazine. Wouldn’t they be better off offering us “1 free issue” or whatever?
The app itself looks very much like the rest of the Play store, so there isn’t a lot I can add other than to say it works well and looks good on the Nexus 7. Here’s a screen shot:
Is there a Place for Digital Magazines?
I find myself wondering whether this really is the future for magazines? This hybrid between print and digital seems to be not quite as good as a printed copy, and not quite as good as a fully interactive web page.
I’m as gadgety as the next guy but I still like to sit down with a newspaper / magazine from time to time. I would miss the unique tactile page turning experience and I like how magazines act as curators of content, finding things that you might not have otherwise picked out from a website. Undoubtedly the print market will decline, but I’m not one of those people who think it will disappear.
That said, perhaps the advantage is having offline content and I can see myself ‘flicking through the pages’ on my daily commute. I look forward to giving it a go anyway and will be curious to see if the concept grows on me.
What do you think?