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I think it is a highly logical and very useful idea that we get to download and store the digital issues of the magazine to our hard drives. I for one travel a lot, and so decided it was a better idea to switch from the paper mag to the digital one, but depending on where I am, periodically my internet does not work. This means I can't enjoy the issue when I am not online, which is not so much fun.
Another point I had, is the back issues. We pay to subscribe to Gameinformer, yet this new digital format doesn't allow us to look at passed issues, only the current one. With the original magazine being delivered, we have access to all of our collection (I've been a subscriber since I was about 13) whenever we feel like reading one for an old rating, or even a taste of nostalgia from old games or even funny old advertisements. I don't know about you, but the, "Hey I remember that!" reaction is very soothing and peaceful to me, reminds me of an awesome childhood/teenhood.
Please Gameinformer, let us download the magazine we love and pay for every single year! Or we may have to get back on the paper trail.
I came here to kick ass and chew bubblegum, and I'm all outta bubblegum..
I second this, with the added suggestion that you consider a subscription tier that allows us to subscribe to both print and digital versions of the magazine. The digital version is very enjoyable with a lot of content not in the print version, but you can't set the last several issues of the digital version on your coffee table for guests to read. You can't read the digital version (conveniently) while sitting in your doctor's waiting room.
The print and the digital versions both fill a need/desire with the consumers, but they're not mutually exclusive needs/desires. I personally would pay extra (not double) for a subscription to both. As it is, I will not give up my print version and so must miss out on the experience and extra content of the digital version. As the OP also said, I've been a subscriber for years and have all my back-copies and enjoy the nostalgia of glancing back at the older issues. I won't give that up.
So please, I implore you, consider a subscription tier that allows us to subscribe to both print and digital versions of the magazine.
One cool thing I've found out is a lot of people that work at Gamestop know how we feel, and will just give you an issue. Always works for me, I explain why I wish I had the paper version, mostly for toilet reading haha, and they just say, "Yea dude that makes sense, well you can go ahead and grab one of those if you want." and wah-lah, I've got both
I completely agree the idea to be able to download and other stuff.
To cooperate in developing ideas for a better magazine, there are several comments I present since I was able to enjoy the full experience of the digital version:
1) The digital version is an immersing experience, which brings so much more to GI magazine.
2) The reason why anyone would consider having the digital version is the extra content they would be able to review. This content would obviously needs to be available in a portable manner that feels similar to having the magazine in your hands. As such, the digital version requires great compatibility with different computers or tablets. Sadly, the digital version in my experience could only be seen in the home computer to experience fully the extra content (including the videos). These were not compatible with the iPad, so the extra content (videos and pictures) was lost, only then been able to have the same experience as the magazine. Until this is addressed many customers, such as myself, who benefit from portability of systems such as the iPad, won't consider changing to the digital version.
3) Furthermore, many magazines have started to include the digital version as a free add on to benefit thier customers, which means they would benefit from both the printed magazine and digital content. If a switch to the digital version is considered as a plus since it reduces operation costs for printing and mailing, additional benefits should be given to customers to promote the change such as price reduction, several coupons for discounts as GameStop, or other stuff like that. If not, the digital version should be left as a bonus to be enjoyed by existing customers, similar to what other magazines have done.
I wanted to share my comments through this forum to be able to improve the implementation of the digital version, specially since I really enjoyed it and think many people would consider changing if their needs were correctly addressed.
Carlos, you've taken the words right out of my mouth!
GI: there is no possibility of me giving up my print subscription. As an avid reader, I enjoy the physical interaction with books, mags and newspapers.
As a geek and a corporate executive who travels frequently, I also enjoy the benefits of digital reading.
I'd love to be able to see the digital version of GI on my iPad, for one thing. I know that is a technical problem (no flash on iPad), but I think you do well to extend your reach to that market segment.
Setting aside that technical issue for a moment, I can't expect to access the digital version of GI for free merely because I subscribe to the print version. Carlos makes a good point that your overhead for the digital version should be a little lower than the print version. However, I do recognize that you are providing additional content through the digital version by including interactivity, videos, audio and the like. I realize this costs you money and the model isn't simply that of providing scans of the print version online.
Having said that, most of the content is the same online as it is in print version. So, following that logic, I'd be willing to essentially "pay the difference" to get access to the online version. Charge print subscribers a few extra dollars to help offset the production costs of the online extras. I'd pay a small upgrade fee for that.
I paid extra for "iPlayboy" recently, too. Having been a print subscriber for 10 years now I have my own archive. But that publisher made available every single page of every single magazine since the very first Monroe edition all in full color and iPad compatible. It also publishes each new month's magazine online for viewing. The online membership is independent of the print subscription in their case but Playboy is arguably far more collectible than GI and they can command the additional fee. In my case that gave access to archives of material published before I was even born.
Anyway, that's a bit off track but the point I wanted to make is that there are successful print and online models out there. I think you would find you could actually increase top line and bottom line by extending an online discount to your print subscribers since many of them are not going to make the switch or pay double for online access. You've got number crunchers for that - did they already crunch a loss? I would find that hard to believe.
In conclusion, the following would compel me to pony up some additional coin to you guys:
A substantially discounted subsccription fee to the online magazine (digimag????) for current print subscribers;
Prorated fee set to coincide with the billing/renewal cycle of my print subscription so that I only have a single bill to deal with;
iPad compatibility either through an iPad app or through a non-flash based method of online presentation; and, finally,
Downloadable issues that I can archive on my hard drive.
I truly believe you can increase your revenue (obviously) and your net by finding a way to include your built in audience of loyal print subscribers.
Thanks for listening and I hope you take these comments to heart.
I agree with the above posts. Having an offline version of the digital magazine would help a lot for us travelers. Could you consider an app for Android or iPhone? That would be amazing!
Also, given that the digital version has had so many bugs, I have not been able to read a single digital issue since September. Really upsetting, I was expecting that you guys would have had this all figured out before most of us in our excitement made the digital switch. So now I don't have a digital version or a paper copy.
Please listen to us, and fix the bugs. We're counting on you guys.
i dont know what GI did, but after 3 months of no mag, I can now, lo and behold, see a launch button... and.... yes, I can read the magazine! Wow. Did the complaining do the trick? I don't know. The world may never know.
I can see how downloading it could lead to people just downloading it from other websites and whatnot. Given that, why not allow download of older issues instead then. Current issue is online only and maybe after 3 months the copy can be downloaded and kept permanently, like the hard copy is now.
I just changed to digital version this month and started to regret it! I thought we could at least download the issues (Specially after paying the same money than the print version) I see no advantage at all having this, so I will give it a month of trial and if I hate it (as I am doing it right now) I will switch back!
I just renewed my subscription and was the sales clerk kinda pushed the digital version saying it came out earlier and gave you more content like videos. It sounded like a great deal cause I get other magazines digitally on my tablet like wired. What makes Wired the digital version so.great is being able to download it and then read it anywhere also having access to all issuses you have subscribed too. You have a great magazine so don't get in your own way, take Wired's lead I bet most takers have tablets and would get your magazine app it would only get you more subscribers. I do love your magazine and don't mean to complain too much cause I'm sure you will make it downloadable at some point I just want it to happen surer.
I'm one board with the above posters. I recently switched to the digital edition thinking i could view it on my nookcolor but it's too glitchy to use on that. If there was a nookcolor specific version along with zinio and coverleaf versions instead of this craptastic flash based thing that freezes constantly.
I was told by a GAMESTOP EMPLOYEE that the digital version was a DOWNLOADABLE PDF. This is so far from the truth, it's depressing.
I agree totally! We should be able to download the mags, I mean we still pay the same price for our subscription so being able to download and read it where and whenever we want would be awesome. Also it would be great if they had an App for the magazine so that would could look at the magazine on an android based Tablet! Currently when I try to view the magazine online on my tablet I can't scroll up or down because the website automatically makes you view the magazine for an iphone or ipad and it doesn't show up right on an android OS. I hope GI is considering these issues and will soon allow us to download the mags and also view them on android based devices.
I agree too!!! We should be able to download the magazines!!!!
I just switched mine back to print copy becouse I cannot view the magizine very well on any mobile device.
Kind of sucks becouse it looks great on a PC, problem is a magizine should be portable and not have to worry about connecting to internet to get your magizine VIA browser.
Too bad becouse I was really looking forward to that option.