Magazines are extremely portable and easy to read on the train. There is no complicated folding in fourths involved, meaning you can actually turn the pages while hanging on to a subway pole. You can fold them in half, if you must, to squeeze them into a purse or roll them into a tube and just carry them like that. You don't need to worry about creasing their spines or accidentally ripping pages when you turn them.
They are disposable, although I do feel a little bit of remorse about throwing them away (or recycling), especially if an issue is extra interesting. Maybe someone out there would enjoy that article on the wacky CEO of Whole Foods! (That's definitely not the most interesting article I've ever read, just the most recent. I'm actually only reluctantly subscribing to the NYer this year.)
They show up in my mailbox, all ready to be flipped through*, not necessitating a trip to the store or even powering up my computer.
*Note: I do not actually flip through my magazines. I read them cover to cover, only skipping what bores me and then turning the page to discover another wonderful and short gem. I have considered flipping through them or at least perusing the table of contents and reading the most interesting articles first, but I can't bring myself to do it. It seems wrong! The magazine was carefully laid out in a certain order on purpose, right? It was clearly meant to be read that way. (Do not dispute this method. It is my method. You stick to your methods.)
Magazine pages can be ripped out, dog-eared, cut, spilled on, sat on, wrinkled, rumpled, sweat on, and used to squash bugs, among other things. And yet we can still read on. Long live the magazine, I hope.
Unlike the newspaper, magazines do not go stale the day they arrive. Why, a monthly, in theory, lasts a month! There is so little pressure with magazines, unless you subscribe to multiple magazines. Then there is a little bit of pressure.