The Spectator’s British political savvy enlightens but app irritates

Oct 7, 2009
Tech

Whether you like The Spectator app really depends on if you like the British political magazine. There are things about this app that inspired and excited me–and features with major flaws. For 99 cents, you can read The Spectator for a week, and not just the current issue, but weekly issues dating back to July […]

Whether you like The Spectator app really depends on if you like the British political magazine.

There are things about this app that inspired and excited me–and features with major flaws. For 99 cents, you can read The Spectator for a week, and not just the current issue, but weekly issues dating back to July 2005. The only other thing you can do with this app is read more by extending your subscription 7 days (for 99 cents) or 30 days (for $3.99).

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of squeezing dense articles onto tiny screens, though I can see the appeal of reading savvy political commentary while in transit. However, an absolute deterrent is that you cannot select an individual article directly from the table of contents. Instead, you need to scroll through the whole magazine one page at a time while the process eats away at your time and patience…especially when the article you want to read is on page 71.

Something I love about this app is the ongoing cultural guides and featured lists. The 40 Poems You Should Know, Top 50 Political Scandals, 50 Essential Films, and more. Not only do the cliffhangers keep you at the edge of your seat, but The Spectator is right on target with their choices.

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