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F1 on the iPad - F1 Racing magazine - One of the best glossy motorsport publications goes digital

Published by Christine

One of the world's biggest Formula One magazines, F1 Racing, has launched in digital form this week, with issues now available in either traditional paper, or modern virtual format. Haymarket Media Group have utilised the popular Zinio publishing platform for online distribution and F1 Racing's March edition is the first to be available in this format.

Digital magazines, how do you read yours?
Credit: Sidepodcast

Early in 2010, we praised Autosport magazine for introducing a digital option to their subscription deals and that move was bolstered by the ability to download a single magazine at a time, rather than committing to a year's worth of motorsport news.

F1 Racing offers the single issue option right out of the gate, with the current price set at just £3.92 which compares well to the recommended retail price of £4.70.

I got access to my copy by using the Zinio iPad Newsstand Reader, and assuming you already have a Zinio login, the whole process was easy. Once I could click the buy button, it was only a moment or two before I got to see the glossy pages firsthand.

F1 Racing is known for fantastic photography and nothing is lost in the transition to a backlit screen

F1 Racing is known for fantastic photography and nothing is lost in the transition to a backlit screen. The text is a different story, of course. In landscape mode, you get a good overview of what is in the magazine, but the text is impossible to make out. In portrait, you get a single page at a time, so double spread features aren't so useful, but the text is almost legible. For hardcore reading, it still needs a bit of a zoom, so on the iPad, it's not quite a comfortable leisure activity. It's handy if you've got five minutes and the device to hand, or of course if you have a bigger Mac or PC screen to do the bulk of the consumption.

One of the best things about a digital magazine, any title really, is that the availability is instant, no matter where you are in the world. You can subscribe to have 12 issues of F1 Racing delivered to your desired device the minute it is released, and there is no waiting for shipping or paying for postage. Even better, there's not the annoying thump of a 60-page magazine hitting the floor to wake you up on delivery day.

You don't ever need to visit the shops, there are various ways to purchase including via Paypal, you can sync between iPad and personal computer, and you can read whenever or wherever you want. Above all else, this digital option has helped F1 Racing turn the corner of convenience.

In the UK, 12 issues will set you back £31.67, while in the US it's $50.85 for 12 or $6.30 for an individual magazine. More countries are available, see the Zinio homepage for more. So far as we can tell, at the moment existing paper subscribers can't migrate across or even receive a discount.

The T128 goes under the spotlight in the April edition
Credit: F1 Racing

Mr C and I gave up reading F1 Racing when our subscription expired and there was no digital option to consider. Now we'll be more likely to pick up an issue, although the price would still make me think twice about buying a seasons worth.

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If there's one thing we would like to see, it is back issues in this new format, Page 22 is the one historical issue we saved for posterity.

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