Review: – a great way to save money on magazine subscriptions

Read more, pay less: Our review of

In my last two blog posts, I discussed strategies you implement to reduce your monthly cable and telephone bills. Today I want to draw attention to another monthly expense that tends to go unnoticed – magazine purchases.

Unlike utilities, most of us don’t get a monthly bill for our reading material (newspaper subscriptions would be an exception to this rule). We mostly buy magazines as an impulse item at the checkout counter. And let’s face it, most people love to read. But have you ever stopped to notice how much you spend every month on reading material. With most magazines now selling in the $5 to $8 range, these individual purchases can add up quite quickly. I read Money Sense, Wired and McLeans on a regular basis. My spouse reads Chatelain and several running and lifestyle magazines. We used to spend at least $50 a month on magazines. But not anymore. We’ve managed to both increase the number of magazines we read while reducing our monthly reading costs to only $10. Read on to learn how we managed to do this.

A new service was recently introduced called It’s a magazine subscription service that specifically caters to owners of tablet computers. I use the service using my iPad, but you can also use just about any other tablet device. In a nutshell, the service is an app that provides tablet access to over 100 magazines for a flat $10 per month fee. The list of magazines is quite extensive and includes the most popular Canadian and American titles.


Here is a list of all the magazines included in the $10/month subscription fee:

  • All Recipes
  • All You
  • Allure
  • Architectural Digest
  • Automobile
  • Backpacker
  • Better Homes and Gardens
  • Bicycling
  • Bike
  • Bloomberg Markets
  • Bon Appétit
  • Brides
  • Canadian Business
  • Canadian Health and Lifestyle
  • Car and Driver
  • Chatelaine
  • Chatelaine (French)
  • Coastal Living
  • Condé Nast Traveler
  • Consumer Reports
  • Cooking Light
  • Cosmopolitan
  • Cosmopolitan for Latinas
  • Country Gardens Magazine
  • Country Living
  • Details
  • Diabetic Living Magazine
  • Do It Yourself Magazine
  • Domino Magazine
  • Dr. Oz The Good Life
  • Dwell
  • ESPN The Magazine
  • Eating Well
  • Elle Décor
  • Entrepreneur
  • Esquire
  • Essence
  • Every Day with Rachael Ray
  • Family Circle
  • Family Fun
  • Fast Company
  • Field & Stream
  • Fitness
  • Flare
  • Food Network Magazine
  • Fortune
  • GQ
  • Geek
  • Glamour
  • Golf Digest
  • Golf Magazine
  • Good Housekeeping
  • HGTV Magazine
  • Harper’s Bazaar
  • Health
  • House Beautiful
  • InStyle
  • Inc. Magazine
  • L’actualité
  • LOULOU (French)
  • Ladies’ Home Journal
  • Living the Country Life
  • Lucky Magazine
  • Macworld
  • Marie Claire
  • Men’s Fitness
  • Men’s Health
  • Men’s Journal
  • Midwest Living
  • Money
  • MoneySense
  • More
  • Motor Trend
  • New York Magazine
  • Nylon
  • O, The Oprah Magazine
  • Organic Gardening
  • Outside Magazine
  • PC Magazine
  • PCWorld
  • Parents
  • People StyleWatch
  • People en Español
  • Popular Mechanics
  • Popular Photography
  • Popular Science
  • Prevention
  • Real Simple
  • Redbook
  • Road & Track
  • Rolling Stone
  • Runner’s World
  • Running Times
  • SKI
  • Saveur
  • Self
  • Seventeen
  • Shape
  • ShopSmart
  • Shutterbug
  • Siempre Mujer
  • Southern Living
  • Sports Illustrated Kids
  • Sportsnet
  • Successful Farming
  • Sunset
  • Surfer
  • Teen Vogue
  • This Old House
  • Today’s Parent
  • Town & Country
  • Traditional Home
  • Vanity Fair
  • Vegetarian Times
  • Veranda
  • Vogue
  • W Magazine
  • Wired
  • Woman’s Day
  • Women’s Health
  • Wood
  • Working Mother
  • Yoga Journal

Reading on a tablet

While NextIssue works on just about any tablet device, that doesn’t mean it’s well suited for all of them. The product really shines on the full size iPad with a Retina display, but doesn’t render as well on older iPads with pre-retina graphics. The text on newer iPads is crisp and easy to read, while on older devices, while still usable, the text and graphics simply lack the resolution required to mimic the true magazine experience.

I would also not recommend this product for tablets with screen sizes below 9 inches. The fonts sizes on smaller displays, even with Retina resolution, are simply to small to read. When it comes to NextIssue, it’s either go big, or go home.

Not all magazines are created alike

Magazine publishers have generally taken one of two approaches when it comes to adapting their content for consumption on a tablet devices. Some magazines, such as Wired, have created tablet optimized versions of their magazines that allow you to control text size and often include multimedia features including sound and video. Others are simply straight ports of the printed version of the magazines, including all adds.

While I prefer magazines that have been specifically formatted for tablet reading, I found the straight ports were also quite easy to read on the tablet. The format is a bit smaller than a traditional magazine, but still quite functional. This product would really shine on a 12 inch iPad, a device that Apple is rumored to be introducing in the fall.

Content Management and user interface

Once you install the NextIssue app on your device, you simply need to launch it and enter your account credentials. The interface is minimalistic, but quite functional. The first step is to browse the extensive magazine selection and tap on the titles you wish to add to your reading list. This will accomplish two things; your selected magazines will appear on your main screen when you launch the app, and as a bonus you’ll receive a notification email everytime a new issue of a magazine is released.

Once you’ve selected your reading list, you simply tap on a magazine to view both the current and past issues. This is another hidden feature of the service that I really like – you can view past issues of your favorite magazines in case you don’t have time to read them when they’re first released. The service also allows you to download content to your local storage so that you can read even when you’re not connected to the internet.

Reading magazines with the NextIssue app is very intuitive and it’s quite easy to get around using the provided navigation tools. Our only hitch was figuring out how to display the navigation tools, as they are hidden by default. To make them appear, you simply tap once anywhere on the screen. This wasn’t obvious, but then again I might have glossed over that detail in the intro tutorial.

Final Verdict

We simply love – it has provided us with a much wider selection of reading material, while reducing our monthly reading costs to only $10. The product is best suited to full size tablets with high resolution screens.

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The Barrhaven Blog