iPad magazine sales numbers show steep decline over a few short months

Discussion in 'iPad' started by jimmyjoemccrow, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    I'm surprised Apple didn't get this right the first time. They need a subscription service. Sell them once a year, not try to sell them every month.
  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    I never read hard copies of magazines, so I don't really have any interest in these either... even if they were free
  3. Kebabselector macrumors 68030


    May 25, 2007
    Birmingham, UK
    Wonder if Kindle or Zinio would be a better option. Though I have to admit if the magazines were produced like The Times* app, then I'd prefer that route.

    *just trying the 30 day trial - doubt I'll be shelling out £10 a month to Murdoch.
  4. saberahul macrumors 68040

    Nov 6, 2008
    I agree. Since blogs became alive, magazines are simply useless, at least to me. I can get updated content on a blog and most of them are free.
    At the same time, I feel tech magazines are always outdated. If a tech magazine is released in Aug 2010, it will have content available at that time. A blog on the other hand can easily be updated daily if not hourly while magazines are updated monthly.
  5. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    I used to get so many magazines a month back in the 80s-90s. Now all I get are 2 trade publications.

    Who needs them? Much rather poop with my iPad. :D
  6. zhenya macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2005
    I'm still a big fan of magazines, and their layout. I like the fact that a lot of information can be smartly laid out in a single page, where things that wouldn't otherwise catch my attention have an opportunity for it. While I spend as much time on the Internet as just about anyone, I actually like well researched and edited stories, and the thought and effort that is required to distill all the content we have access to into a digestible format. Newer information isn't necessarily better - I'd consider ~90% of what comes across Engadget's or Gizmodo's front page to be garbage.

    That said, few magazines have gotten it right yet. The early adopters saw huge numbers of downloads early on because everyone wanted to try it out. But with most magazines not yet offering subscription pricing, most people won't bother paying $6 or whatever per issue.

    Two magazines that have really gotten it right so far are The Economist (well-done app that mimics their print layout, but utilizes the format of the iPad in a way that doesn't interfere with their content, and free access for print subscribers, and digital only access available for ~20% less) and Car and Driver (this one was unexpected, issues are currently free, and they don't have a subscription option, but they have done the best job of keeping the best of the magazine format, but making it better in sensible ways. It sounds stupid, but the first time I was reading a car review article and the picture at the top of the page became a movie, seemingly out of nowhere in the 'magazine' I was holding in my hand, it was astonishing - even for someone as jaded as myself).

    I have hope that within 6 months I won't have any paper subscriptions left.
  7. Merthyrboy macrumors 6502

    Jul 21, 2008
    I like that on the iPad the copies are usually cheaper and I can read them whenever though I only buy if the topic interests me.
  8. Uofmtiger macrumors 68000


    Dec 11, 2010
    I use Zinio and most of the mags I like aren't available separately. Zinio had great prices last year, I got quite a few subscriptions for $5 a year. I wonder if the second year will be more expensive?
  9. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Feb 6, 2009
    I think that the biggest issue is the subscription system, or lack thereof. Having to buy individual issues for a total that's well above a standard annual magazine subscription probably doesn't help the market much.

    Supposedly Apple is going to announce a change to this, rumored to coincide with the official announcement of The Daily for the iPad. A quick easy way to subscribe to a magazine for a full year, at a discounted price over month-to-month purchasing, might help things pick up.
  10. ssdeg7 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 15, 2010
    Maybe a suscription API would help magazines, but I still think that it will not be a permanent solution. If magazine developers don't start worrying about users they are going to lose them.
  11. iPadThai macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2010
    Here are three top reasons why magazines fail in general and so they also fail on the iPad:

    1) subscription costs
    2) 80% ads in magazines 20% actual content
    3) outdated content compared to the Internet.

    Why the hell would I pay for a magazine when I have sites like engadget and macrumors??!
  12. Stirolak123 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2010
    Retro gamer is a great mag, but eadh issue costs five bucks and i can get co sole quality gameloft games for hthat price. It should cost like three bucks per issue.
  13. fobfob macrumors 6502

    Oct 15, 2008
    Wait till I start charging to read my posts ... I'm looking at a subscription model :cool:
  14. jimmyjoemccrow thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2009
    It isn't garbage it's usually much briefer than a magazine article because it's designed to be news more than a detailed analysis. It's all free apart from adverts on the sites. Magazines charge a subscription and usually still have adverts.

    If you buy a magazine how many of the articles are typically of use to you? When I scan computer magazines in a shop I see perhaps 2 or 3 that are useful and the rest will be ignored. Magazine articles tend to be more in-depth than a website or a blog, but you can't buy magazine articles on a one by one basis. I can't see them embracing that model either.

    Arstechnica seems to have an interesting model where most of their content is free with adverts but if you subscribe you get access to their premium articles and have an adfree experience. I wonder how many magazine publishers would be willing to give that a try. The traditional magazine can't compete with the internet tbh, unless there are millions out there who still want to look at articles they don't want in an old fashioned format.
  15. zhenya macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2005
    The magazines I subscribe to I tend to read cover to cover, every article. I'm sorry, but 90% of what comes across Engadget, Giz, Macrumors, etc IS garbage. I don't care that there is a new iPhone clone in china, the 357th new Android handset, or a new Hello Kitty alarm clock in Japan. These sites are primarily news feeds; very little of what they do is journalism.
  16. Kobra macrumors regular


    Jun 17, 2009
    I believe that the iPad is a great medium for a magazine. But, most of the current offerings in the app store has got it all wrong. I don't want a iPad magazine to look like a adventure game, often the layout is to confusing and many publishers try to cram in as many "multi media" functions as possible. A iPad magazine should be similar to the printed version with sparse use of rich content where it adds value to the article. Good examples of successful iPad magazines is the British car mag EVO and the Swedish daily "DI+", poor examples are "The Project" and "Wired" (messy layout and to much rich content).

    Also, untill Apple does something about it's pricing in the app store the magazines will be to expensive to really take off...
  17. Kainz macrumors member

    Nov 24, 2010
    I've tried a few and the price is just too high. I was looking at the BBC magazine Focus recently and each issue is £3.49, however it is free for those who subscribe to the print version.

    The Popular Science/Photography magazines all had poor page navigation designs. I think these were £1.79 but the magazine itself was short.

    T3 seems to be the best gadget magazine I've encountered, with thoughtful design and navigation and a good balance of everything. The price per issue is now £2.

    A subscription model is really needed for these to take off tbh.
  18. jimmyjoemccrow thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2009
    Ridiculous. Even if you don't care, there are plenty of people who do, and in any case the format makes it simple enough so you don't have to read the articles you don't need and there is no fee.

    The magazines you read cover to cover must be very specialist, or you have very broad tastes. In which case why are you so quick to call Engadget and Gizmodo garbage? When I take a look at the typical consumer magazine I see articles that may have more depth than Engadget, but they are also largely only about making the reader feel good about themselves, i.e. I read that article therefore I am now well informed on the subject. There is no focus, just information for it's own sake.
  19. Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    I do not read a lot of magazines, period, but would be more interested if the price were lower. Some offer on line subscriptions that are close to the hard copy price which is not going to encourage sales.

    The magazine people are not stupid and will adjust their prices if they want to sell on line.
  20. Stirolak123 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2010
    How come newspapers are dying and being replaced by ereaders or computers, ipads, etc. But not magaznes esp with the easy and addedfunctions and cheaper pricea on ipad? Is it cause newspapers are i credibly cumbersome and unco fortable to lay out and read?
  21. Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    Most newspapers are dying because no one uses the want ads anymore. This used to be 70% of the incoming funds to local papers and with no jobs and houses to be advertised, want ads are dead and so are the papers. Retail advertising has even shifted away from the papers.:eek:
  22. Stirolak123 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2010
    Why dont they advertise products like canned foods like they use to in newspapers now?.
  23. Stirolak123 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2010
    Also, any of you think that sales people or sales reps like the many who post here with slingbox or direct tv etc. Will be unemployed soon due to everyone basiczlly shopping online and ordering online amd goimg to markets or electronix stores less for their gadgets? And the future of marketing will be online ads and good pr rather than sales people in stores asking you questions?
  24. Stealthipad, Dec 30, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010

    Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    As the age of the average retail shopper drops, the Internet will and is already a huge and growing factor. One of the biggest reason for the decline in newspapers is the decline of the age group of those who "used" to read them!

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