Tuesday, July 17, 2012

City magazine, The Ann, releases tablet edition through WoodWing partner Aysling Digital Media Solutions

It is not uncommon to find replica editions released under the name of the digital publishing vendor. It is all part of the deal, for a low cost the vendor will release your magazine into the App Store, but then the publisher must split the revenue with the vendor (as well as Apple, of course).
It is far rarer to find an app show up under the name of a native development company, however. A search for WoodWing, for instance, will not reveal any apps other than its own app. But, it turns out, there are a number of apps where the seller is listed as Epyx & WoodWing M̩xico S.A. de C.V. Рthese, I assume, are from the Mexican division.

Moving Media AB, the company behind the Mag+ platform, also has one app under its name other than its review app – an app of the photographs of Tina Bauer.

Because it is so rare, it caught my attention that an app for a city magazine, The Ann, showed up in the App Store this week under the name of WoodWing's U.S. partner, Aysling Digital Media Solutions. Aysling is headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan so it shouldn't be too surprising that they should help out a magazine from their home town.

I contacted the company to see if we can expect more apps under the Aysling name but I did not receive a response.

As for The Ann, the app is not a tour de force or a showcase for what can be done with the Adobe digital publishing suite. Instead the app presents a modified replica editions with a minimum of enhancements. Because of this, the magazine is sometimes difficult to read, even on a new iPad.

The one issue available weighs in at 90 MB on the new iPad and can be read only portrait. Both the app and the issue inside are free to download in keeping with the magazine's free distribution model.

Left: the library page; Middle: the TOC which also has navigation instructions; Right: a normal looking page which then reveals biography information when one taps a name.