The Future of Magazines?

December 3rd, 2009 | Posted in News

Wondering what that might be?

Here you go:

Content delivered wirelessly and automatically to a portable reading device… a next generation Kindle, Apple’s long rumored iPad or a Windows based tablet netbook.

This kind of content with the flexibility, interaction and dynamics displayed in this demo and delivered to the user is something people will be willing to pay subscriptions for.


  1. Sherm Cohen says:

    …so it’s a website basically.

    • Tom says:

      No, it’s considerably more interactive than a website. It’s sent to YOU, not the other way around, and can be read at your leisure without the need to be connected to the internet once it’s downloaded. It can also be saved and archived.

      The point is that newspapers and magazines can use this form factor and model to deliver much more comprehensive and involved content and charge for that content. That plus advertising will give magazines and newspapers a revenue stream that will allow them to afford to pay people to CREATE that content.

  2. Jeff Zugale says:

    It will be a while before that kind of smooth functionality and device interconnection (with TV, home network, servers etc.) actually happens, but yeah, once all the devices talk to each other and can be interoperated simply without technical skill, this is the killer app.

    I think the big mistake would be to keep all the different reader devices “proprietary,” using their own disparate networks and brand-only hardware/software interaction.

    I think the “e-reader wars” are going to wind up being very costly for any company making one that isn’t already a player in the computer hardware biz! (Unless they work out a way to make their unit universally interconnectable.)

  3. Willva says:

    It looks really cool Tom, but I‚Äö√Ñ√¥m skeptical whether people wouldn’t just access the web via iphones, laptops and other digital devices, for news and entertainment.

    This device could essentially be created as a iphone app, say the new Yorker creates an iphone app (or any digital device app) that can be updated daily for a fee and you can read all previous purchased articles, play games, receive advertising (dare I say haha).

    It’s all already there, someone just needs to make it happen.. and i hope somone does, otherwise apple will just make another killing and forge the future with their locked devices.

    A new way to sell content is defnitly in need of discovery though =)

  4. Jeff says:


    This interactivity and enhanced visual content does look pretty awesome. However, sometimes I feel like I’m staring at a screen all day from my work computer to ipod to computer at home. I feel myself longing for more print media now than before, just so I can unplug from all these electronics. Plus a magazine requires no batteries.

    From your perspective, do you think this will supplement the print media as you mentioned as a revenue stream, or would it become the dominant form of delivery and then the print gets the back seat? I guess in a way with all the media outlets shutting down, virtual content is already taking a lead.

    Always appreciate your blog and insights!

    • Tom says:

      I totally agree and I think books will always be around, but magazines are destined for electronic delivery. The cost of printing and distributing magazines is so high that it’s becoming economically nonviable.

    • Tom says:

      Electronic delivery will become the dominant form at some point, but only when they stop giving it away on the web like they are now.

  5. Dan Collins says:

    Me like!!


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