Most of the flat surfaces in our house are covered with magazines. Every now and then we have a clear-out, and every now and then I want to read an article that I've chucked in the bin. So, apart from the fact that they are the absolutely best way to read anything, magazines aren't working as well for me as they could.
This weekend I wanted to read a camera review from a copy of the Amateur Photographer magazine that I hadn't bought when it came out a while back. So I took a look at getting an online copy. Of course I could get it from the Apple store, but that would tie me to Apple products, and I don't use my iPad enough to have it charged and ready to go at any given time.
So I ended up downloading Zinio onto my Lovely Lumia 1520 and then buying the magazine from them. Zinio is available for lots of platforms, which means I should be able to read it on any device, including my Surface Pro 3 when it comes. (such excitement)
The app and the purchasing experience were pretty smooth, although I was a bit confused when I was asked to pay in dollars. Turns out that because a while ago I told my Lumia it was american to get Cortana to work in the UK, all the apps think they are in america too.
This actually works very well because at the moment Zinio are doing three month's free subscription to three magazines for american Lumia owners who join up. In other words, if you have a US Lumia you can get a whole bunch of free magazines, including Popular Mechanics, a really interesting US magazine that doesn't seem to have a UK counterpart.
The reading experience on the phone is not as good as a proper magazine, but then putting ten magazines in your pocket is tricky too. I'm not sure if I'll go over to reading all my magazines on phone and tablet, but given that this would mean I could read all the old issues really easily, it is quite tempting.
What I really, really, want though is some way that I could convert my printed paper into an electronic licence. I'd be quite happy to pay a small fee (say fifty pence or so) to be able to access the digital version of a magazine that I'm about to throw out. This could be activated by scanning a barcode in the publication, and it needn't go live until a couple of months after the magazine is published.