I’ve noticed recently an advert on the TV for a subscription based app that allow you to download magazines for free to either Android or IOS tablets, a bit like Netfix for magazines. It’s priced around £7 per month which means its around the price of two magazines a month so not too expensive if you tend to read a few each month.
So I followed the link and registered, I needed to use my library card number which can be found on the back of your library card just under the barcode, then set a username and password which gives you access to the rbdigital.com website.
Its not a pretty site by any sense of the imagination but its functional and while it is possible to read the magazines on the website you are bar better off installing the app which allows you to read the magazines on your tablet.
Both the website and the app allow you to browse, filter and select magazine which can be downloaded to your device for offline reading.
Once on your tablet you have access to all of the magazines you have selected, when selecting magazines you are given the option to receive an email when new editions come our however at this time I haven’t had a chance to see how that works, and if it automatically updates the app.
Magazines are well presented and have a simple navigation interface where swiping moves to the next page, and clicking brings up the menu above that allows you to quickly move to a specific page, or to close the magazine and return to the main selection screen.
At the bottom of the screen is a small button market “Text” which displays a text only version of the current page making it easier to read busy pages or small text.
Overall I’m really impressed with whats on offer, they is a good selection of magazines in a wide range of categories although there are a couple of exceptions for my own personal taste most notably Wired, and Focus but considering its free I cant complain.
I also tested it on my sons account and was pleased to see it works, which considering the cost of kids magazines is a great bonus, although in comparison to the adult selection the children’s is quite small.
This is a really great addition to to the services available from Oldham Libraries, something we’ll have to start pushing at the Hack Oldham digital drop in sessions.