I’ve actually had this iPad magazine/application for a couple of months now. I originally got it because I wanted to check out the interactive features, and the way BMW designed the interface and user experience. I started writing a review of it a while ago, but for some reason never finished it. Like so many other things, it just got away from me in the last 6 months. Anyway, as a new owner of a BMW 128i (the MINI was totaled back in June) I recently grabbed a number of the BMW iPhone applications and that reminded me of the iPad magazine.
Like most iPad magazines, the BMW magazine has all sorts of interactive features. Things that are only possible on a computer or in this case a tablet. The issue I am reviewing here is the summer issue. I don’t know if BMW released a Spring or Winter issue earlier, but I am going to assume if they did it behaved very much like this one. The BMW Summer magazine/application looks and feels like a beautiful glossy magazine. The difference is, it packs some very cool interactive multimedia features making it feel even more impressive.
As you work through the magazine, you scroll horizontally flipping from page to page with your finger. AT certain points they give you subtle visual hints letting you know there is additional content below the fold. If you scroll down, you see the article in its entirety. At any given point while scrolling the page vertically, you can move on to the next or previous article with a quick swipe of the finger. The navigation feels a bit awkward at first, but once you understand the metaphor it makes a lot of sense. The UI allows the reader to move through the experience more fluidly.
As for the content, the pages look great and respond fluidly as you flip from article to article. If you want to go deeper than just looking at the pictures or reading, you can can explore the app’s fun multimedia side which includes video, games, audio, links to additional content, etc. As with the content that was lifted from the print side, the interactive components are well designed, visually stunning, and created to extend the overall experience. Content includes everything from an interactive “Paint your own BMW Art Car” game, to a car navigation feature which will guide you to a restaurant featured in the applications travel feature.
BMW like Audi has long been an early adopter of Apple iOS technology With this latest application BMW is continuing to investment in connecting Apple device lovers with the BMW brand. This is not only a great iPad magazine/application, this is a great brand driver for BMW owners and non-owners. You don’t have to own one of their cars to enjoy what BMW offers here.