I have struggled with the Zinio magazine app for about a year now on several different devices. The device I use the most is my Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 as it has the best form factor for e-magazine reading. I just can’t believe how wide of the mark that Zinio has fallen.
First of all, here is what Zinio thinks it is (from zinio.com):
Zinio is more than a mobile reading application. We’ve spent the last decade creating the digital editions of the magazines you love, delivering the exact same material you get in print‚ plus exclusive features like video, audio and live links, on your iPad, iPhone, desktop and laptop.
No, Zinio, all you are is a reading app (and not a very good one). Things that I would expect to do (and can do in other reading apps) like search, highlight, take notes, bookmark, et al are all missing from your application. When I open the application, I want to be returned to where I left off reading, not to my library or even worse, your shopping app where you waste my bandwidth displaying stuff I didn’t ask for in the first place. And I have yet to see a publication with ‘exclusive video and audio’.
All of the things I listed above I can do with a physical magazine but not with your supposedly enhanced electronic version. The one thing I can do with Zinio that I can’t do with a physical magazine is follow links. But you manage to get that hopelessly wrong as well.
I mean, why, oh why, when I click on a link in a magazine you insist on taking me to your walled-garden browser where I can’t save the URL or basically have access to any browser functions other than viewing? Why not just open the link in the browser on the tablet? Or at least give me the option of choosing? I actually reported this as a bug and got several nonsensical answers back that never addressed the issue.
Me: “Zinio app needs to allow the user to use the browser built into the tablet and not the broken walled-garden browser that zinio forces you to use. the zinio browser lacks much functionality and is a real nuisance to use (and is completely unnecessary)”
Zinio: “Zinio does not have a browser.
Zinio has an app.
If your device browser does not support Flash, you will not be able to read your magazines through Zinio’s website. You must, then, use the app.”
This seems to demonstrate a complete failure to apprehend what I was asking about. So I tried again:
Me: “You are wrong. I run the reader on an Android tablet using the Android
version of the Zinio application. When I click on a link inside of a
publication in Zinio it does not launch the tablet’s browser, it opens a
minimally functional browser window that is part of the Zinio application.
This broken version of the zinio browser does not allow any of the
function of the native browser. Users need to have the option to run the
full featured browser. There is no reason I can see why this shouldn’t be
Zinio: “Zinio does not have a browser or an Android Reader.
Zinio has an Android app. The app does not integrate with any browser.”
In frustration, I finally responded: “You are a bit of an idiot and keep repeating yourself. Perhaps you should pass this on to someone with a better understanding of both the Zinio Android application and customer service.”
Here endith my attempt as a customer to be heard by Zinio.
So I guess it is safe to say that your dubious product is matched by your equally dubious support function as well.
Well, Zinio, do you recognize these obvious issues and have a plan to fix them? Or should I just anticipate you going out of business in a few years and seek alternatives?