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OPLIN 4Cast #278: Magazine news

Posted in 4cast

Magazines certainly aren’t what they used to be. Publishers of print magazines have been rapidly developing new apps for putting their content on mobile devices, they’re providing content in video format through apps, they’re using augmented reality apps to build intersections between print and online content, and they’re redesigning their print magazines so they’ll look better on tablets and e-readers. And of course, there are increasing numbers of magazines that simply do not exist in print. Here are a few recent developments in the world of online magazines:

  • Magazine apps show encouraging take-up, but more disruption ahead (The Guardian/Stuart Dredge)  “One thing about all this innovation: it’s still based around magazines as standalone entities sold a la carte or for single-publication subscriptions. The print model, in other words. Yet there is disruption of this too, with the likes of Next Issue – a joint venture between Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp. and Time Inc in the US.”
  • Next Issue Media launches with all-you-can-read pricing model (VentureBeat/Julie Klein)  “Today, Next Issue has tens of thousands of customers who read an average of two magazine titles through the app. The company does allow customers to access content for free if they already have a print subscription. Though [CEO Morgan] Guenther declined to say what percentage of customers are authenticating their print subscriptions, he did say that this option is a ‘big hit, people love it.’”
  • Farewell, app store? Netizine turns magazines into social networks, runs on HTML5 (TechCrunch/Sarah Perez)  “Instead of trying to reproduce the print magazine in digital format, with Netizine, the solution is to use social metrics as a way to present a magazine’s articles. For example, readers can dive into the ‘most commented,’ section first, or the ‘most bookmarked,’ ‘most shared,’ or ‘highest rated.’”
  • Fewer new magazines, fewer closures this year (Crain’s New York Business/Matthew Flamm)  “Not surprisingly, the numbers also showed more magazines launching as digital-only titles. MediaFinder counted 43 new print titles and nine new online magazines for the quarter. A year ago, the number of launches came to 50 print and four digital.”

Digital subscribers fact:
Hearst Magazines (Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Good Housekeeping, Seventeen, etc.) hopes to have one million subscribers to the digital issues of its magazines by the end of this year.