New Type of Magazine Subscription for the Digital Age: “Next Issue”
By Anne-Marie Kovacs, Chief Wife
We all know that print publications – books, magazines, newspapers – have been hurting in the last few year. And so has the music industry. We are just not buying these things the way we used to, even 5 years ago. My family hasn't had a print newspaper subscription for about 10 years. We get on news from NPR, online and occasionally from television. We are definitely part of the “cause” of the newspaper industry's decline. And we don't buy music from CD's or buy DVD's. We use Pandora, iTunes and Netflix as our main channels for those mediums.
The only place where we have remained very traditional is in buying real paper books. But I foresee that this habit will be waning soon as well. Actually, the moment I no longer have to share my iPad among family members, all my books will be on there, either rented or purchased.
And magazines… Well, our household does get a couple subscriptions but we are more of the ad-hoc single edition purchasing type. Like when we travel. But that will change for us too. Actually, as soon as this brand-spanking new app called Next Issue comes out with the iPad version of their current Android-tablet-only version (I hear that getting approval for apps with Apple is a looooong process).
So, what's Next Issue? It's a Netflix-type service for magazines! More precisely, it's the joint venture of five leading U.S.-based publishers, Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp. and Time Inc. They created Next Media, an app which provides various subscription plans for tablet access to magazines, on demand, whether single monthly titles (1.99/month) or for the whole collection ($9.99/month).
There are 32 monthly and bi-monthly titles currently available: All You, Allure, Better Homes and Gardens, Car and Driver, Coastal Living, Conde Nast Traveler, Cooking Light, Elle, Esquire, Essence, Fitness, Fortune, Glamour, Golf, Health, InStyle, Money, Parents, People en Espanol, People StyleWatch, Popular Mechanics, Real Simple, Southern Living, Sports Illustrated Kids, Sunset, This Old House and Vanity Fair. The catalog of titles is sure to expand as the service grows.
What's more, it seems that the tablet version of the magazine is richer and more interactive.
I'm in. And might even become a Popular Mechanics reader. Pourquoi pas?