Flipboard magazines come to the Web
After launching on the iPad and eventually making its way to iPhones, iPod touches and Android devices, Flipboard is now taking its act to the desktop — sort of. The company announced on its blog this morning that Flipboard magazines, which are collections of “flipped” articles curated by users, can now be viewed on the Web.
For content curators, this means magazines might be seen by more people. Links to magazines that are shared via the Flipboard app will no longer require that app to be viewed, and a “Subscribe” button is located at the top of the magazine’s Web view so users can easily subscribe using their Flipboard account.
Those who’ve used Flipboard in the past will feel right at home using the Web version of a Flipboard magazine. The cover is present, just like in the app, and you can use swiping gestures on your trackpad (up and down, oddly enough) to flip the magazine’s pages (if you don’t have a multitouch trackpad, you can also flip pages by clicking the arrows or using your arrow keys).
There don’t appear to be any sharing options for articles inside Flipboard, but that’s probably done on purpose. Articles don’t open in a Flipboard-style window but, instead, open in a new tab on the original website. It’s disruptive to the experience when you’re thrown out of another iOS app and into Safari, which is likely why Flipboard utilizes a Web view inside its mobile app. When you’re in Chrome and another tab pops up, it isn’t as big a deal.
It’ll be interesting to see how Flipboard magazines are used on the Web. While it’s certainly a pretty way to check magazines out, it’s not the most optimal way to consume the content inside them, since you’re leaving the magazine to read articles anyway. But as a quick way to look at a magazine’s content and subscribe if need be, the Web-based magazines should get the job done. It’s certainly better than clicking a link and landing on a page that tells you to download Flipboard.
The Flipboard folks put together a video, which you can check out below. If you get a chance to view some Flipboard magazines on the Web, let us know what you think.