Zinio, my favorite iPad app

Posted by Mark

If I was forced to keep just one app on my iPad it would have to be Zinio. Zinio has made me owning an iPad logical. I’ve already posted previously about the fact that I didn’t know what exactly I would use the iPad for but with Zinio its become very clear… magazines. I love magazines and I hate books (short stories are fine). Maybe if I was stuck on an Island with just a library I would take up reading but with my already hectic life I need to make the best of my time and books just take too much of it. It’s the same reason I don’t watch many movies, for the same amount of time it takes me to watch 1 movie I could watch 4 episodes from my favorite TV show. The problem we have in Kuwait is magazines are expensive costing KD3 and up per issue every month. In the US you could subscribe to a full year for the same price we pay for just a single issue here. I’ve tried subscribing to US magazines and having them shipped with Aramex but magazines can be heavy and in the end I was paying 10$ a year to subscribe to 12 issues of a magazine and then paying KD3 or KD5.500 to ship a single issue to Kuwait.

With Zinio I no longer have that problem. Zinio originally was a website which allowed you to subscribe to digital versions of magazines so you could view them on your computer. Now they’ve created an iPad app which allows you to view the magazines on your iPad. The magazines on the iPad look like the print version except it has a few advantages. For example I was flipping through an article in Car & Driver about a car and on one of the pages I noticed an icon, when I clicked the icon it opened up a gallery full of pictures of the car.. ones that weren’t available in the print version. Other nifty features is the ability to open the contents page and then click on the headline of the article you want to go to or view all the spreads as thumbnails and then select the spread you want to see. There was a Honda ad in the magazine with a button click here for a test drive, when I clicked the button it played a video commercial of the ad (which was actually a good one). You can also view the magazine as a spread (two pages side by side) or if you hold the iPad vertically you can view the magazine page by page. You can zoom into the page to enlarge the copy by other double tapping a location or by pinching the screen. Another cool feature is the fact that you can view a purely text version of the magazine in case you’re having issues for some reason reading the regular print version. Articles in the text format can also be emailed to friends or to yourself to print out and you can even control the font size.

When you run the app you have three main sections, featured articles, your library and shop. Featured articles is basically samples of articles from some of the popular magazines which you could read for free. Your Library is where all your magazine issues are stored. You can view your magazines either by titles or by date. It’s very organized and easy to navigate. Finally the shop section is where you can flip through the magazines available to subscribe to and order them. Once you download a magazine you don’t need Internet access to view them. Magazine sizes vary from around 20MB to 40MB per issue. The prices for most US magazines like Car & Driver, Maxim, Cosmopolitan etc.. are around $10 to $15 for a yearly subscription (similar to their print counterparts) while some magazines that are European imports cost a lot more. You can use your Kuwaiti credit card without any problems.

The Zinio app is free and available in the App Store (on both the iPhone and iPad). Here is a link to the Zinio website where you can check all the magazines they have available with their prices. [Link]


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28 comments, add your own...


  1. lima says:

    hey mark whats ur internet speed ?

  2. Mark says:

    2MB with Qualitynet

  3. Mansour says:

    i like!

  4. Lima says:

    I have 2mb as well but I have problem watching the shows on abc player :(

  5. Lima says:

    Sorry I forget to say I do it via a US server

  6. N says:

    I’ve written about my top iPad apps a few days ago, and zinio is a must http://uptill1.com/2010/04/24/top-8-ipad-apps/

  7. c'est la vie says:

    can i subscribe with kuwaiti visa or i have to have US account ?

  8. c'est la vie says:

    sorry just read that i can do it with kuwait card,

  9. Mohd28 says:

    I use Zino on my pc long time ago , I used to use it with U3 flash drives but windows 7 is not supported .
    you don’t need the MaxiPad to use Zino .
    also with Zino you can get magazine you can’t usually buy in Q8 .

  10. Hamad says:

    the problem with Zinio on Ipad is the delay time when browsing through pages, it uses a standard pdf, and the flip time is horrible!

  11. Mark says:

    Hamad the flip time is instant, no delay whatsoever and you can flip rapidly through multiple pages.

  12. 360dewan says:

    Gr8! I’ve been using Zinio for sometime through their smart-phone web page but did not know about this App, thanks .. Actually, I stopped all my magazines hard copies subscription after Aramex price increase since it did not worth it at all :)

  13. Logachandran says:

    Yes Mark, I am used to Zinio reader. I purchased some magazine like popular science. As you said, subscribed for $10. But when i checked for shipping i found zinio. Nice to share with all guys

  14. Marko says:

    Well I think it may be time to invest in an iPad..especially with the HP Slate being put on hiatus and Dell’s PC tablet being put on hold indefinitely. All of the iPad killers are nowhere to be found.

  15. zombietime says:

    Mohd28 : hi! Zinio Reader is compatible with Windows 7.

  16. Burhan says:

    It seems not all latest editions are available on the ipad. Men’s Health for example. Latest edition is only available on Mac and PC, the older issue is available on Mac, PC and iPad.

  17. Mark says:

    Actually Mens Health isn’t available on Zinio on the iPad because its available in the app store as a stand alone app.

    Not all the magazines they have on zinio are available in the ipad version of zinio. they have a note about this on their site, they’re still converting a lot of them to work on the ipad.

    btw, i notice there are video reviews embeded in car & driver which is pretty cool.

    also i think i’ve subscribed to every magazine in their store :(

  18. muscati says:

    Mark, the page turning is instant but then it does take a second for the new page to come into sharp focus. It’s not perfect, but considering the options, it’s great.

  19. Ftf says:

    Amazing app, spent more than 100$ so far

  20. Abdullah says:

    I totally agree with you Mark. Try to use Skype on iPad also, its awsome.

  21. Mark says:

    Well skype works better on the iPhone since you call like you’re using a regular phone but yeah i’ve tried it on the Ipad using my iphone headphone/mic and works well.

  22. […] started getting a lot of emails after my Zinio post asking me how I am getting my apps from the iPad app store without using a US credit card. Well, in […]

  23. S. says:

    Wow thanks for the info!!! Nothing beats flipping through a real magazine, but this is excellent plus saves paper! The censoring and obscene shipping prices have put me off magazines for a very long time now

  24. Dan says:

    Zinio is a great idea and I was excited to use it and disappointed in it’s use. They constantly add unwanted magazines to my Library and you can not get get rid of them. Subscriptions are a mess, control over the library is a mess, deleting is a mess, trying to empty the trash is impossible. It’s become Magazine spam.

    I’ll read the last two mags I ordered and get rid of it. Just hoping Magazines will allow direct subscriptions for the Ipad.

    In my opinion, Zinio has ruined there great application.

  25. Hind says:

    Hello all i just installed and bought some mag . but whats the best thing to do read online or download and read offline will it take alot of space or shall i download it to USP .plz help

  26. F Flintstone says:

    Sucks that Popular Science decided to pull their mag from Zinio in order to make everyone buy their own app. Sometimes, I like to read magazines on my really big screen, and that’s just not possible anymore since PS has no desktop app, not to mention their issues are ridiculously expensive on the app. They’ve lost this reader of the last 40 years.

  27. […] I’ve already posted about the Zinio magazine app on the iPad before (pictured above) and about how great it is and if there was only one app I could have on the iPad that would be it. Sadly though, not all my favorite magazines are available to subscribe to on Zinio… or at least not available yet. So what’s the solution? […]

  28. […] I’m glad I have an iPad and the Zinio app so I don’t have to deal with issues like this. Nov 16, […]


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