RB Digital has you covered, cover to cover!
Do you miss all those wonderful magazines we have on the library shelves? Wish you could browse them again?
Don’t fret, just use your Hamden library card and click over to RBDigital’s magazine collection, on our Download and Stream page. You will be able to browse the collection without registering, but to read any of the issues, you will have to go through the registration process only once. Once you register, not only the magazines will be available, but the ebooks and eaudiobooks as well.
In a nutshell, here is a rundown of RBDigital’s magazine collection:
- 120 current subscriptions; back issues of other magazine titles
- Stream entire issues; requires Internet connection.
- An app is available for smartphones and tablets, that allows you to download magazines when connected to the Internet, then read while offline, no time limit.
- Search by magazine title; browse by genre.
- Available to Hamden residents; Lion library users can register with their home library for the same content.
Hamden Public Library subscribes to 120 current magazine titles, entire magazines, in a wide range of topics and genres. There are other titles in the collection for which you will find back issues, only, and not a current subscription.RBDigital magazine search feature is not as “robust” (or specific) as for the ebook and eaudiobook collections. You may find that a specific topic you want to find is not listed among the genres, but a more general genre is listed. You are likely to find what you are looking for by browsing that genre. This is similar to browsing the magazine racks in our library or in a bookstore.For an idea of how this all works, let’s say your interest is Gardening, and you want to get an overview of this topic. You may first type in “garden” as a title. A few magazines match that title, but when you click on the title you find that the library only has back issues. That might be fine for you, but if you insist on something very current, you would then try a genre search (under the advanced search bar). Uh oh, “Gardening” is not listed; however, “Home & Garden” is listed. Clicking on this brings up magazines on lifestyle, gardening, farming, and more. Clicking on possible titles, you do find some that are current up to this month. Success. You can now read online (stream) or, with the app on your mobile device, download and then read an issue offline. You do not have to return any issues unless you want to, and you can choose to automatically receive the next issue when connected to the Internet again.
This is a wonderful resource if you want to “pick up” a magazine to browse through, or you know that a title has a feature that interests you. However, as demonstrated by the gardening example above, it is not as good at hunting for specific information, say, What is eating my rose bush? or How and when should I prune my forsythia shrub? (For this, using one of the research databases such as researchIT CT One Search would give specific information from a keyword search.).
On any device, whether laptop, desktop, smartphone, or tablet, you can select and stream any number of magazine issues you like, and, for current subscriptions, choose to have the next issue automatically check out to you. Also, you must be connected to the Internet while you browse and stream. On a smartphone or tablet, you can use the RBDigital app from the App Store (iPhone or iPad), Play Store (Android), or Kindle Fire to download one or more issues of the magazines you enjoy — no limit — and keep them for as long as you want. You still have to be connected to the Internet to browse and download each issue. Once it is downloaded, you can read it offline.
Hint #1: Keep the RBDigital app open on your device to have offline access
Hint #2: WiFi is available from the parking lot of each of the library buildings: Miller Library at 2901 Dixwell, Brundage Community Library at 91 Circular, and Whitneyville Library at 125 Carleton. The user name is Hamden Guest, and there is no password.
For the official RBDigital magazines FAQ, click here.