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Next Issue Adds Eight New Titles To An Already Impressive Roster

Posted by Rob LeFebvre on November 29th, 2012
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: NO HOARDING REQUIRED :: Read Review »

Next Issue, one of our favorite ways to consume the kinds of magazines you might find at the doctor's office waiting room, has just announced an additional eight titles. These represent an expansion not only to the number of magazines included, but to the type of publishers - all eight are from publishers that weren't part of the original agreement.

The new titles added to the Next Issue catalog include: ESPN The Magazine, Fast Company, Food & Wine, Inc., Men’s Fitness, Men’s Journal, New York Magazine and Travel + Leisure. While the Next Issue catalog continues to grow with the addition of these eight new magazines, pricing of the unlimited access plans remains the same.

App Update: Next Issue Readies for 30 More Magazines

Posted by Rob LeFebvre on August 24th, 2012
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: NO HOARDING REQUIRED :: Read Review »

If you're as big a fan of Next Issue as I am, you'll thrill to know that there will soon be 30 more magazines to browse within the app. This new update is mandatory to be able to get the new issues, which will add to your account, basic or premium, soon.

INFINITY Comic Fanzine Relaunched and Reinvented for iPad

Posted by Lisa Caplan on August 6th, 2012
iPad App - Designed for iPad

If you are among the ever-growing number of digital comic and graphic novel enthusiasts, there’s a new free magazine on Newsstand called INIFNITY that's worth checking out. Designed for the iPad, it has the look and feel of any glossy digital bi-monthly without an overload of interactive features. There’s Twitter integration and audio commentary, but the magazine maintains an old-school feel with its attention focused on comic books and related genres.

The new iPad offering is actually a reinvention of a small comic fanzine that bears the same name which popped onto the scene in the 1980s. During its run it had a knack for finding stars on the rise, and the new iteration plans to do the same while also offering news and interviews with today’s big players.

The launch issue has tons of news and mini reviews, quotes from famous grapic novelists like Art Speiglman of Maus fame and features an interview PJ Holden about his commando-themed comics being banned by Apple, along with a preview of his latest, Murderdrome. There is also a one-on-one with David Lloyd on his graphic novel Kickback, a look at the art of Simon Russell and capsule reviews for several iOS titles.

Favorite Four iPad Magazines - Summer Sartorial Edition

Posted by Lisa Caplan on June 20th, 2012

In the world of couture it's already Fall/Winter 2012-13, but here in reality, summer is hot - literally. With the season came Time Warner to Newsstand, which got us poking through their offerings and finding ourselves drawn to lighter beach fare like fashion magazines. This week we look at our favorite four fashionista periodicals for those planning what to wear now and to see what's on the catwalk for Autumn.


ELLE US has couture, trends, and very readable articles. On top of the high-end glossy magazine, there are some really cool features. Enjoy an ELLE "Personal Stylist" - just upload your image and try on looks directly from the app. There is also a great Inspiration Board where you can put your favorite pieces to create a digital, sharable collage - perfect for Pinterest. The July issue just came out and features a look at Selena Gomez in a TDF top, a huge spread on instant outfits for any occasion, and a guide to vacation dressing and packing.


This venerable Conde Nast publication, Vogue, made its iPad debut in May and each issue is packed with all the great fashion and articles you've come to expect on top of some cool interactive features including videos. The July issue has a fantastic one of Emma Stone doing a special photo shoot where she reveals her "vampy" side and talks about her role in the latest Spiderman summer blockbuster. This issue also looks at what every girl needs on her summer fashion checklist and peeks down the runway at the haute-couture for fall.


We were happy to see Time Warner bring InStyle to Newsstand. The magazine is a fresh lighter look at fashion. The monthly has lots of tips on how to get the hottest styles for less, and how to put them together to make eyes pop and jaws drop when you make your entrance. The new July issue downloads really quickly, has stories on Salma Hayek and Justin Bieber, great hot weather makeup looks and tips, and over 150 "chic steals" to love for under $50. Oh, there's also some frozen treats that would make any "it" girl want to risk the calories.


NET-A-PORTER, from the website of the same name is a weekly that's part magazine, part shopping portal and part fashionista web haven. The app is simple to use, and full of great looks. This week, the editors have an article on the hottest one-piece swimwear. Check out Issa London by Daniella Helayel (of Kate Middleton now Duchess of Cambridge's engagement dress fame), who reinvents mod on the runway. Then, after drooling and possibly buying, go discover the secrets of the summer sundress. The best part of the app is that you can touch on an item to get more details, the price, and purchase your must-haves right from your lap.

Snap Magazine Hits Newsstands with Photography from the Hipstamatic User Community

Posted by Lisa Caplan on June 13th, 2012

Hipstamatic, an iPhone photography app that’s similar to Instagram, released an iPad magazine last week called Snap. The monthly showcases the best user-submitted photos. They have been doing that for some two years now, but with Snap they have a format that will reach more than just their own social media followers.

Snap Magazine, for iPad only, is divided into eight sections. Cultured is all about hipster lifestyle and street photography. Obsessed is for dedicated followers of fashionistas, celebs and other trends.

Situation has images from users on the front lines from protestors to random odd sightings, while Hip Stop looks at art, urban pop culture and hot spots. There is ever a section called Aventure in Hipstaland, which is  based on Hipstamatic’s Facebook travel page. Slash is sort of a catch all and Lensed showcases actual photographer’s strutting their stuff.

The section that may be most helpful for growing a readership has a titillating name: Climax promises to to cover all “the unspeakable pivotal issues," foremost amongst them, sex.

Snap Magazine is live in the App Store and available now.

Zinio Updates For New iPad

Posted by Lisa Caplan on April 17th, 2012
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: A MULTI-MAGAZINE SENSATION :: Read Review »

Zinio has long been a serious player in digital magazines distribution, on and off iOS. Zinio first appeared on the App Store in April 2010, but offered digital magazines on its website well before that. Zinio's iOS app updated recently and is now optimized for the new iPad’s retina display. With a vast catalog of first and second tier magazines and with periodicals available across various mobile and PC platforms, Zinio is proving they can stay competitive. Download speed has also been improved considerably in this update.

The quality of individual digital magazines is always dependant on the publishers, not Zinio or any distributors. Some magazines look like what they are - prettified PDF's. But, when magazines like National Geographic take advantage of all the interactivity, particularly now with the crisper text and images, the reading experience parallels any on Apple's Newsstand where many magazines have yet to be updated for the enhanced display.

Zinio's update shows the company's continued dedication to iOS as a platform. Until Apple can bring in more partners like Rolling Stone and somehow urge or compel all iOS native magazine publishers to support its best and newest features - a slow process considering major publications like Time Magazine, The Nation and The Atlantic have yet to adopt Newsstand, much less adapt to the latest iPad's specs - Zinio should continue to hold their market share and possibly even see it grow.

Palimpsest Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Kevin Stout on May 18th, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: SIMPLE
Palimpsest curates long reads from various magazines and presents them in a simple, text-only form.
Read The Full Review »

Sports Illustrated for iPad Review

Posted by Zach Sims on July 11th, 2010
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

When it was released in December, the tablet demo of Sports Illustrated (see below) set off a firestorm online. The new SI promised interactivity, live sports scores, and the great sports coverage readers have come to expect, all wrapped in a beautifully designed application. Since the video's introduction, the iPad has been released and dozens of magazine properties have taken their brands and content to the App Store. Few have succeeded in matching the design or functionality promised by SI's initial prototype. Now, with the official release of the Sports Illustrated app, the video has finally come to life.

Delivering on Old Promises
Fortunately, Sports Illustrated's app includes most of the features that were promised in the initial tablet demonstration. It far outperforms the official Time Magazine app, also published by Time Inc. One of the coolest features of the app is the "wheel," a feature that enables sharing, emailing, player stats, and related photos and articles to be accessed simply by holding a finger down on an article. This means, however, that there's no traditional copying and pasting available in the app. The share feature luckily makes up for this shortcoming,

[caption id="attachment_40908" align="alignright" width="225" caption="Live Scores and Articles"]

[/caption]Like Time Magazine's application, the Sports Illustrated app also integrates nicely with live content from SI's website to ensure that articles and issues are never out of date. Individual articles can pull up "related articles" or "related stats" from the aforementioned wheel. Better yet, users can get live stats and articles from SI.com directly within the app.

One of the Few Standouts
The Sports Illustrated app is an all star in the App Store. That said, it's not difficult with the lackluster efforts from the magazine industry thus far. The SI app has great navigation and doesn't bother with any of the more bizarre vertical and horizontal reading schemes. Instead, it sticks to the basics, presenting great content and adding interactivity and new features only where they're of use to the reader. The SI app should serve as a great example to publishers of what their magazines should be like when ported to the iPad.

Sideways Magazine for iPad Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Zach Sims on June 18th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: TURNING MAGAZINES ON THEIR SIDE
Sideways is the first magazine designed for the iPad and it begins to deliver on the hype of iPad-only magazines.
Read The Full Review »

Magazines on the iPad: A Round Up

Posted by Zach Sims on June 10th, 2010

The iPad has been heralded by many as the future of magazines and the savior of the publishing industry. Magazines like Newsweek are losing circulation and being purchased at fire sale prices. The iPad provides a blank canvas for publishers, content producers, and anyone who wants to innovate. The problem is that the opportunity has not yet been realized.

I remember being thrilled at the prospect of iPad magazines even before the device itself was announced. Sports Illustrated has showcased a great teaser video of their application, and Bonnier's Mag+ platform also appeared to have potential. The arrival of the iPad shows unrealized potential. Reading apps, like iBooks and Stanza, have shown great ability at translating the book reading experience for a tablet.

PDFs for iPad?
Many publishers have simply translated their magazines to the iPad by making them into PDFs of the print version. Some, like Wired, have added custom UI layers and slight multimedia additions to spruce up their publications. The vertical and horizontal reading interface present in magazines like Wired show that publishers are trying to think out of the box, but they haven't quite succeeded yet. Unfortunately, the current workflow may not work. A series by Ad Age this week shows that magazine publishers are taking the content from their print editions and dropping them into templates for the iPad. What would happen if magazines were custom designed for the iPad? If the content was specifically designed to take advantage of the iPad's features? I hope we'll be able to find out in the coming months.

A Roundup
I've reviewed six iPad magazine apps so far, each with their own set of pros and cons:

    Wired: An interesting first attempt that falls short due to download size, quirky navigation, and its underlying architecture.
    Time: Interesting effort tying live content (News Feed) with magazine content but this is essentially just a PDFed magazine.
    Newsweek: The iPad-only edition it includes makes boastful claims, but the app itself can't compete with the others listed here.
    GQ: The men's interest magazine's first iPad edition includes a bizarre navigation system but some useful innovations.
    Zinio for iPad: The popular and experienced magazine digitizers bring their platform to the iPad and make it one of the few viable options for those interested in magazines.
    Popular Science+: Like Wired's app, bizarre navigation makes Pop Sci difficult to enjoy on Bonnier's Mag+ platform.

So far, it appears that even lackluster efforts are producing success for publishers. There is clearly more potential for the medium and I'm sure content producers aren't resting. I can't wait to see what comes next.

GQ Magazine Review

Posted by Zach Sims on June 6th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

Developer: Conde Net
Price: $4.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0

iPhone Integration Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
User Interface Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
Re-use Value Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar


Conde Nast's Gentleman's Quarterly (GQ) came out a bit earlier on the iPhone than Wired and could be a harbinger of what the future holds for the many Conde Nast publications headed to the iPad. GQ offers an interesting take on layout as well. Their portrait orientation is a new iPad/iPhone specific layout, requiring users to click on individual articles in order to read them and to display the toolbar and click "back" to get back into the reading workflow. This is somewhat similar to the horizontal and vertical workflow in Wired but it includes the additional step of touching into the story and tapping away from it. Turning the iPad into landscape, however, displays the traditional magazine layout almost as if it were a PDF.

[caption id="attachment_38227" align="alignright" width="225" caption="GQ\'s Story Page"]

[/caption]The occasional interactivity in GQ does very little for the overall presentation and the workflow definitely needs work. It's fascinating - trying to merge photos and text with a traditional and manipulable portrait view and the traditional landscape view. GQ's first attempt at the iPad is ambitious. Hopefully future iterations will improve upon the innovations in GQ and take them to the next level.

Conde Nast seems to be ahead of the curve on adapting their magazines for the iPad - both Wired and GQ are Conde Nast properties. Popular Science publisher Bonnier has adopted a universal platform for all of their magazines, Mag+. Conde Nast would do well to have its magazines collaborate on their iPad applications. Both Wired and GQ have interesting takes on the user interface required for a successful iPad magazine app, but neither fully nails the concept. GQ has a slight advantage over Wired with its integrated subscription store, something Wired is sorely lacking. Wired also exists only as an iPad app, whereas GQ manages to shrink the magazine to iPhone size too, reaching a larger audience and experimenting with different forms of content delivery.

GQ is an ambitious attempt to take digital magazines to a user group that may not be quite as tech savvy as Wired's. They do so, however, with a somewhat convoluted user interface that needs refining.

EW's The Must List Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Chris Kirby on May 4th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: A MUST DOWNLOAD!
The iPad may or may not turn out to be the ultimate magazine consumption device, but rather than give us an entire magazine to pore over, Entertainment Weekly created an app that recontextualizes their Must List magazine feature - and does so spectacularl
Read The Full Review »