Regular Cheapskate readers know of my fondness for magazines, hence my frequent mentions of deals from digital-mag services like Next Issue and Zinio.
So how did AnyTime escape my radar for so long? Like Next Issue, this iPad-powered newsstand gives you unlimited magazines for a flat monthly rate. And for a limited time, you can get a 3-month AnyTime subscription absolutely free. Regular price: $9.99 per month, for a grand total of around $30.
Currently the service is available for iPad (via the free Readr app) and via the official BlackBerry Newsstand. I tried it with my third-gen iPad.
The good news: Readr is a slick app, one of the better magazine readers I've seen for iPad. It's smartly designed, with very handy bookmarking, sharing, and favorite features, and it supports Retina, which still eludes Next Issue. Alas, there's no text-flow view for readers who'd rather dispense with a lot of zooming and scrolling.
But the real bummer is that although AnyTime touts "unlimited access to 10,000+ magazines," that's just not the case. For starters, this number probably includes back issues, not individual magazine titles. What's more, many of the more popular titles aren't included with AnyTime, but must instead be purchased separately.
So, for example, while your subscription does include stuff like Better Homes & Gardens, Entrepreneur, MacUser, and Men's Fitness, you don't get biggies like Car and Driver, Food Network, GQ, or Wired. They're available via Readr, mind you, just not included with AnyTime.
I'm not saying you shouldn't take advantage of this deal -- quite the opposite, as the more people who sign up, the more likely AnyTime will add more titles -- merely that you should temper your expectations.
To get the giveaway, you'll need to leverage a little social media. First: like, follow, or +1 StackSocial on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus. Second: share the deal on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus. Then click "Get it" and follow the instructions from there. (Although a subsequent step involves clicking a "download" link, there's nothing to actually download. You're simply transported to an account-signup page.)
The other caveat here is that you'll need to provide a credit card number (same as with pretty much any subscription trial), then remember to cancel after three months so you don't start getting billed.
Update: My confirmation e-mail from AnyTime listed only a 7-day trial. I'm assuming this is just a clerical error, but I'm investigating just to be sure. Stay tuned.
If you like magazines the way I like magazines, it's hard to pass up a three-month free pass to a sizable digital library of them -- even if that library could be better.
Bonus deal: Good heavens. For a limited time, and while supplies last, Newegg has the Brother MFC-J220 multifunction printer for $44.99 shipped. It prints, scans, copies, and faxes, and even comes with PaperPort SE software. It's a USB-only model, but no doubt that's fine for users who need to pair it with just a single PC. (And, of course, there's always Windows' printer sharing feature.)
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