Purpose of App Review

  • to review the breadth of the new JAMA Network Reader mobile app
  • to assess the usability of the app, including unique features of the app

Introduction

Many of the foremost scientific journals have or are developing apps for your smartphone to allow you mobile access to that journal’s newest publications.

The JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) Network is a collection of JAMA and 10 other field-specific JAMA-journals. The JAMA Network Reader (JN Reader) web app provides access to JAMA and the remaining 9 contemporary journals within the JAMA network.

User Interface

This is not an app to be downloaded from an app store. Instead, to get your hands on this app, you need to point your browser to http://mobile.jamanetwork.com/. The home page provides instructions on how to setup the app on your device and provides the link to the app.
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The app home page prompts you to enter your email address. You will use it for gaining access to the JN Reader app. If you have not registered, the app will prompt you to register. The app will then guide you through the process of how to install the app on your device.

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Once you have registered, you simply enter your email address and the home screen of the app then loads.

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The home screen lists the 10 journals available in the app (JAMA, JAMA Neurology, JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery, JAMA Surgery, JAMA Dermatology, JAMA Ophthalmology, JAMA Psychiatry, JAMA Internal Medicine, JAMA Pediatrics, JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery). Each journal can be expanded (+ radio button) or deleted from the list. The settings does allow you add the journal back if you accidently deleted it.

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The top left of the home screen provides you access to the home screen, any bookmarked articles, as well as your offline library. The top right of the home screen allows you to search through the contents of the app, change user settings, and learn more about the JAMA Network.

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Just below the top toolbar, there are two navigation icons – Journals and Issues.  Selecting Journals allows you to navigate directly to the first page of the most recent articles for the particular journal of interest.

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Choosing Issues allows you to navigate between the various issues (including online firsts) for a particular journal.

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Upon choosing an issue or article, you are brought to the first page of the issue/article.  A split screen function allows you to see the table of contents, and a bottom toolbar also allows you to hide the table of contents.

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The top of the table of contents also allows you to add or remove an issue from your offline library.

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The bottom toolbar also allows you to change font size (three choices available), share the article link with yourself or with a friend, and even the ability to bookmark the article.

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Articles provide extra-app, intra-article, and intra-app links. Intra-article tables and figures can be enlarged by selecting the image.  The image can be viewed with or without its accompanying caption.

The search function allows you to search through all of the journals and issues available. You can select the article of interest, by selecting the “view article” option. You can also filter search results by journal(s).

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You can also email the article link to yourself or others.

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Price

  • The mobile app is currently free for a limited time period. Subject to change.

Likes

  • user adaptable (see the available journals you want to see)
  • ability to download entire volumes for offline viewing
  • easy to follow instructions for setting up the icon on your mobile device
  • enlarged versions of figures and tables available

Dislikes

  • Unclear costs once free trial period is over
  • inability to highlight text
  • advertisement pop-ups on the bottom of the screen
  • limited years available to search (back to Jan 2012)

Healthcare providers that would benefit from the app

  • Health-care practitioners relying on or using recently published literature to support evidence-based practices

Conclusion

  • The JAMA Network Reader web app provides a comparable journal reading and searching experience to other well-known journals.
  • It has several unique aspects, such as access to 10 journals in the free version and the ability to download only the volumes you want after perusing them for offline review. Those options make this app an enticing way to read and analyze scientific literature. The JN Reader web app is available on any device with a connection to a web browser.

iMedicalApps recommended?

  • Yes

JAMA Network Reader Web App Link 

Rating: 4/5
1. User Interface – 4.5.  Straightforward setup with easy access to user preferences; directions/prompts provided
2. Multimedia usage – 4. uses split screen, in article links.  Tables and graphs are PDF-quality. No video or audio features in app or links to outside of the app.
3. Price – 4. Currently free, unclear costs later.  Appears to be included in individual subscriptions
4. Real world applicability – 3.5.  Literature is always helpful to support medical practice, but may not be useful every day.

App version: 1.0
Compatibility: any device with web browser

Supported browsers:
MOBILE: Safari iOS 4+ Mac, Chrome 11+ Mac/Android/Chromebook, Android 4+ Android
DESKTOP & LAPTOP: Safari iOS 4+ Mac, Chrome 11+ Mac/PC/Linux/Chromebook
Tested on: iPhone 4S, iPad 4, MacBook Pro with Mac OS X 10.6.8 (Lion)

Disclaimer:
This post does not establish, nor is it intended to establish, a patient physician relationship with anyone. It does not substitute for professional advice, and does not substitute for an in-person evaluation with your healthcare provider. It does not provide the definitive statement on the subject addressed. Before using these apps please consult with your own physician or healthcare provider as to the apps validity and accuracy as this post is not intended to affirm the validity or accuracy of the apps in question. The app(s) mentioned in this post should not be used without discussing the app first with your healthcare provider.