Google launches online magazine

In typically enigmatic style, Google launches website, calls it “a book” and downplays whole affair

Google has unveiled a quarterly online publication that’s intended to help people “take time out and consider what’s happening and why it matters”.

The first issue of Think Quarterly is about data and how its power can be harnessed for business purposes. It contains in-depth articles from luminaries such as data expert Hans Rosling and Hal Varian, Chief Economist at Google. It’s a hefty read.

The articles can be viewed in a familiar web-based format, or set out in print magazine form via a beautiful, full-screen Flash viewer provided by Issuu.

Think Quarterly was designed, commissioned and edited by creative agency The Church of London. Founder Danny Miller told us: “In designing Think Quarterly we focused on making something really beautiful, unique and fresh using great photography and great illustration. We’ve commissioned amazing illustrators such as Geoff McFetridge and Adrian Johnson, and we’ve got fantastic photographers like Spencer Murphy. We’re bringing really high quality photography and illustration to what is essentially a business publication.”

Although the site is available to everyone for free, interestingly, Google tells us that it’s intended primarily as a print publication for their clients and partners. A select group of around 1500 will receive hard copies today, and the company says there are no plans to sell it. There is a mobile version of the site at m.thinkquarterly.co.uk.

Rob Mills, studio manager at bluegg.co.uk gave us his take on it:

“As someone who much prefers reading physical copies of magazine and books, I was pretty smitten with the online version of Think Quarterly. Firstly, the content was of interest to me which is a must for anything to hold my attention but it is also a lovely magazine to look at with a great design and attention to detail. It certainly made me want to read on and I’ll look forward to future issues.”

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