As Netflix and Hulu have become the leading one-stop locations for movies and television shows and services like Spotify, Pandora, Google Music, etc. have done the same for music, British startup Readly, which launched in 2013, is looking to do for magazines.
Readly’s catalog, which can be found here, includes 35.755 issues from 1,660 magazines (a figure that apparently varies by country), ranging across a wide variety of topics. One thing that I found useful is that clicking upon a specific magazine within the catalog allows readers to see all of the back issues that they can access, in case they are looking for a specific month.
They are not concentrated on a single geographic region, as the startup currently serves users in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Sweden, Lithuania, Turkey, India, and the Philippines, offering access to country-specific titles or editions of popular magazines.
And what’s notable here is that the service is not only available for Android and iOS, but on Windows 8, which is not the case with many startups. Readly’s Android app has proven to be pretty popular, currently maintaining a rating of 4.2 stars from 4,272 reviews, while their offering for iOS boasts a rating of 4 stars from 158 reviewers.
Readly generates revenue from both subscribers, through a monthly fee ($9.99, for those who live in the United States), and from publishers, by taking a 30% cut on whatever revenue they generate. One of the perks for publishers is that they do not have to pay a fee to offer access to their material, with revenue generated based on the amount of time that people read their content.
Readly has declined to reveal user figures or how much funding they have obtained, but would tell us that venture firm Zouk Capital is a major shareholder.