The Mac Observer’s David Winograd focuses on an excellent point – the failure of magazines to gain real traction on the iPad.
The problem, as he sees it, is that magazine fans like him (and your editor) really dont like throwing away magazines, and tend to keep favorite ones around for years for reference, but iPad magazines tend to be too doggoned big to hang onto in an sunstantial number, especially if they include “interactive” content and/or are optimized for the iPad 3′s Retina display, with for example an issue of Wired weighing in at well over a gigabyte, and most issues at least half a 64 GB unit will be soon enough overwhelmed.
The Cloud? Not a satisfactory solution due to long download times and lack of access where there’s no WiFi or data service. One of the appealing aspects of traditional print magazines is their no-hassle portability and instant access.
Personally, I still subscribe to several ink-on-paper magazines, and although some offer free iPad version access with the print subscription, I’ve never bothered downloading even one. I really don’t like reading for leisure on an electronic screen, especially a backlit one, much preferring the tactile satisfaction and easy-on-the-eyes quality of hard copy.
If e-mags were available as simple and relatively svelte PDF files without the “because we can” interactivity hoo-ha, they might be able to carve out a viable niche, but I’m not in the slightest surprised that the category is not doing well.
For David Winograd’s commentary visit here: