iPad magazine subscriptions delivered, still broken

Want to go online-only on your iPad with your favorite magazines? Sorry, you'll have to keep waiting.

Despite Apple's talk about environmental friendliness, subscribing to iPad magazine apps now requires you to kill a tree.

People, a publication of Time, Inc., will be the first magazine whose iPad version is free to print subscribers, Fortune's Tech blog reports. Time, Sports Illustrated and Fortune will follow. But here's the catch: You still can't buy a magazine subscription for the iPad alone. The only way to avoid paying the full newsstand price is to subscribe to the print version, forcing you to deal with a pile of wasted paper that grows taller by the week.

Multi-magazine reader apps, such as Zinio, do sell iPad subscriptions (disclosure: PCWorld sells a digital magazine through Zinio), but they don't allow for the custom-built experience that individual apps provide.

Reportedly, Apple prevents publishers from selling their own iPad subscription plans, but the reasoning isn't clear. Apple may want to keep money flowing through iTunes, or may not want to lose control of the magazine market or consumer data, according to MediaMemo. Those theories make sense given that Apple's technically not losing new revenue or user data on print subscribers. It's just a shame that the best workaround entails ordering a print subscription, and tossing the magazine in the recycle heap when it arrives.

That's not the only nuisance of Time Inc. magazine apps. As People's iPad FAQ points out, there's no automatic delivery of new issues. You get a notification when new issues are available, but you've still got to add each new magazine manually.

Despite those gripes, Time Inc. deserves credit for giving away the iPad version of its magazines to print subscribers. These apps tend to offer bonus content, such as photo galleries and video, and a greedier -- I'd say more foolish -- publisher would try to squeeze a few more nickels and dimes from its loyal customers. Now all we need is Apple to stop doing the same with the publishers who are only making the iPad stronger.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags iPadtabletsApplehardware systemstablet PCslaptopsapple ipad

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jared Newman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?