Friday, July 13, 2012

Apple reverses itself and makes all products again eligible for the EPEAT rating system

No one really could figure out why Apple had decided to pull its products from the EPEAT rating system. Were they making some kind of protest? Nothing was heard from the typically tight lipped Apple, of course.

As a result, several government entities began letting it be known that Apple products would no longer be considered for future procurement.

But today, and quite out of the blue, Apple is back... and admitting that it was all a bit of a mistake.

Here is the letter from Bob Mansfield, Senior Vice President of Hardware Engineering, has just posted on the Apple website.
We’ve recently heard from many loyal Apple customers who were disappointed to learn that we had removed our products from the EPEAT rating system. I recognize that this was a mistake. Starting today, all eligible Apple products are back on EPEAT.

It’s important to know that our commitment to protecting the environment has never changed, and today it is as strong as ever. Apple makes the most environmentally responsible products in our industry. In fact, our engineering teams have worked incredibly hard over the years to make our products even more environmentally friendly, and much of our progress has come in areas not yet measured by EPEAT.

For example, Apple led the industry in removing harmful toxins such as brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). We are the only company to comprehensively report greenhouse gas emissions for every product we make, taking into account the entire product lifecycle. And we’ve removed plastics wherever possible, in favor of materials that are more highly recyclable, more durable, more efficient and longer lasting.

Perhaps most importantly, we make the most energy-efficient computers in the world and our entire product line exceeds the stringent ENERGY STAR 5.2 government standard. No one else in our industry can make that claim.

We think the IEEE 1680.1 standard could be a much stronger force for protecting the environment if it were upgraded to include advancements like these. This standard, on which the EPEAT rating system is based, is an important measuring stick for our industry and its products.

Our relationship with EPEAT has become stronger as a result of this experience, and we look forward to working with EPEAT as their rating system and the underlying IEEE 1680.1 standard evolve. Our team at Apple is dedicated to designing products that everyone can be proud to own and use.

Bob

#5 and Magnificent Man: contrasts between a custom solution versus PDF from Kindmags

A quick trip through the App Store this morning revealed that Apple was once again promoting a magazine that is being sold under the Kindmags.com name – #5 Magazine.

If the name of the name of the magazine is a mystery to you, no doubt your an American. Number five refers to the Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand, and the magazine is a rather shameless way to sell lots of goods and capitalize on the soccer player's fame. The magazine, which can be found online, as well as in app form, is produced in association with New Era Global Enterprises which provides management services for a number of stars of the EPL.
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Despite the magazine being centered around a star athlete, the app appears under the name of the developer: Kindmags.com. Currently there are 16 apps appearing under the name of that developer, all of them universal apps.

The vast majority of these apps are described by Kindmags themselves as "PDF" (or "PDF with Video"). One such magazine is Magnificent Man, a magazine from Bremont Watch Company. The effort for #5, however, is listed as "bespoke" – a custom project.

The two digital magazines couldn't be more different. Whereas #5 is designed specifically for the tablet, to be read in landscape, and is filled with audio and video, Magnificent Man was clearly designed for print and simply converted into app form from the art director's PDF file. One is easily read and enjoyable (if more than a bit too commercial), while the other is a nightmare of turning one's tablet and zooming in the read the content.

The last issue of Magnificent Man available through the app is the January/February issue. It is possible that the publisher, too, has realized that this is not an optimal way to bring one's magazine to the iPad.

Meanwhile, #5 is getting some more promotion from Apple (in the iPhone Newsstand section of the App Store), which is probably what the effort deserves.

Check out both digital magazines in this short video:

Dow Jones takes over full ownership of The Wall Street Journal Japan K.K., the joint venture publisher

In more news concerning News Corp, today Dow Jones & Company, a subsidiary, announced that it had acquired the 40 percent ownership stake held by SBI Holdings in The Wall Street Journal Japan K.K., the joint-venture publisher of WSJ.com's Japanese-language edition.

With the acquisition, Dow Jones becomes the sole owner of the Japanese language edition of the financial newspaper and its digital assets.

"The acquisition demonstrates Dow Jones's continued investment in publishing, particularly in high-growth markets and in digital, local-language initiatives," Lex Fenwick, CEO of Dow Jones & Company and publisher of the WSJ said in the company's announcement. "Together with the WSJ.com Chinese-language edition and soon-to-launch Bahasa Indonesia news site, the expansion in Japanese enables us to continue reaching new readers in Asia and to introduce them to the broader, comprehensive coverage of The Wall Street Journal worldwide."
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"This significant investment is evidence of our determination to expand the Journal across platforms and languages," said Robert Thomson, editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and managing editor the WSJ.

"It is also a sign of our commitment to Japan, which is the world's third-largest economy and seemingly at the start of a new phase of global expansion. That expansion is contingent upon companies and investors being able to make well-informed decisions and our aim is to ensure that Japanese readers have access to the world's foremost news and analysis in their own language," Thomson said.

Like other Dow Jones properties, the Japanese edition of the WSJ has its own mobile and tablet editions. WSJ Japan for iPad lies outside of Apple's newsstand as News Corp. generally avoids Apple's in-app purchasing system. The big exception to this rule would be the New York Post app, which is inside Newsstand and allows readers to make purchase through the app, and The Daily, which does the same.

Morning Brief: News Ltd. CEO rejects calls for additional media oversight in Australia; an obituary for 'The Word'

News Ltd., the Australian arm of Rupert Murdoch's media empire, is not prepared to accept the new media regulations being proposed which call for a News Media Council. CEO Kim Williams stated today that the media should "be governed by the consumer, not governments."

Williams stance, voiced an an SA Press Club luncheon in Adelaide, is in response to the ongoing Finkelstein inquiry, which Williams described as "preposterous," according to The Australian, the News Ltd. owned national newspaper.

"The only way to continue to survive in a world governed by consumers is to provide them with what they want. The challenge is to make news even better," Williams said.

The stance by News Ltd. seems to reflect the position held by News Corp., in general, that governments are not, in face, representative of the people, but are a wholly separate entity, more accountable to business and the media than citizens.



Writing for The Atlantic this morning, Michaelangelo Matos laments the recent news that the U.K. music magazine, The Word, has folded.

"Music magazines shut down so frequently these days that it can feel like numb routine to hear of another's passing," Matos writes.

"But the recently announced demise of The Word, a nine-year-old British rock monthly, hurts more than most. The Word did something that seems beyond most of its competitors now: It breathed," Matos wrote in her obituary for the magazine.

Two weeks ago the magazine announced on its website that the August issue would be its last.

"In the nine years since the magazine launched there have been dramatic changes in the media and the music business. These changes have made it more difficult for a small independent magazine to survive and provide its staff with a living. This hasn't been made any easier by the economic climate of the wider world," the magazine said to its readers.

The website will stay open "for the immediate future as a point of contact."

The Word has/had an iPad edition available inside the App Store which appears to be of native design. The app has received little attention in the U.S. store, though the app has gotten nothing but raves inside the U.K. App Store.

This might be one of those golden opportunities for someone to step in and save this title as a tablet-only edition, don't you think?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

IPC Media launches a set of newish tablet apps for its magazines for the North American market

I was asked this morning by someone involved in a magazine company which had just released its first tablet and mobile app editions into the App Store what I thought of their app. It was an awkward moment. "Well," I stammered, "I'm not a big fan of replica editions."

I then went on to say that for many companies, creating a native tablet edition may not be a good, or even reasonable, option. That they were able to get their magazine into the App Store at all was a good start, and I congratulated them on their milestone.

I try, really hard, to not be complete dogmatic about replicas – they have their place.

I remember seeing the magazine Decanter in the App Store for the first time. The app presented a standard, hard to read replica edition, but at least it was now available – at least that was how I felt at the time. The British wine magazine would be increasingly hard to find on newsstands if only because newsstands were closing everywhere around me thanks to the collapse of the Borders chain.

IPC Media, which is one of the largest (the largest?) consumer magazine publishers in the U.K., publishes Decanter – it has a long and interesting history which you can read about here. Today, it is owned by Time Inc.

Earlier today the company launched a series of new apps for many of its titles within the U.S. App Store. In addition to Decanter, the new apps include Yachting Monthly, Practical Boat Owner, Rugby World, World Soccer, Uncut, Country Life and NME.

But what looks like new apps really aren't.
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In the case of Decanter, for instance, was is new is simply that their is a separate app for the North American market. The old app inside the U.S. was called Decanter Magazine International, which resided outside the Apple Newsstand. The new app, officially called Decanter Magazine North America. In the U.K. the app is simply called Decanter Magazine and other than having its issue and subscription prices in pounds I fail to see a difference.

So if you were looking for digital, natively designed tablet editions for some of your favorite IPC Media magazines, well you'll have to continue to wait. Further, the pricing continues to be rather outrageous. A single issue of Decanter costs $9.99. I guess to cost to ship all those ones and zeros across the pond remains pretty high. Meanwhile, the same issue in the U.K. App Store is £4.99 ($7.70).

It looks like someone is trying to protect their stateside distributors.

Washington Post updates its WP Politics iPad app, adding new features important in covering the November election

I have not been a huge fan of the WaPo's current strategy with its main tablet edition, which I feel pretty much unnecessarily duplicates its website.

But the company launched an app for its political coverage recently, WP Politics, and the app has a lot going for it. Last night an update was released which adds new features – just in time for the political season to heat up.
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WP Politics is a free app to download, and most of the content inside is free. The app, though, has a "premium" strategy whereby users can pay a $2.99 subscription fee in order to access additional content. This includes a premium "Insider’s Corner” that includes politically-oriented blog content such as Ezra Klein’s Wonkblog and Chris Cillizza’s The Fix (though I assume this is available for free online).

The app description promises future premium content in order to lure subscribers, though this should have been thought through a bit more before launch of the app.

The update brings in some nice new features:

  1. General Election Polling and Projections Map -- includes state-by-state projections and analysis from The Fix, in addition to comprehensive polling data, 2008 results, and "Good to Know" facts for every state.
  2. Customizable MyMap -- enables users to create up to 5 state by state prognostications, showing how each state’s vote impacts the race to 270 electoral votes.
  3. General Election Candidates-on-the-Issues Tool – plots Obama and Romney’s current and former stances on top issues, and offers video clips of the candidates speaking about each issue.
As I'm sure I've written before, this is the kind of thing I'd like to see more of: new digital product launches that take existing content, reimagines and redesigns it, and presents it to new and existing readers. Tablet apps like this also, it should be noted, increase the overall real estate available for advertising – especially important since the space available on most existing tablet editions is pretty limited.

My rather angry reply to 2 blog posts in defense of the moves by Advance Publications; when creating a 'digital-focused' execs start with layoffs, new initiatives come later

It took me longer than usual to write a comment on the GigaOM site this morning. Maybe it is the drugs I've been taking to get rid of this mess in my lungs, or maybe it is my sometimes obvious anger that I feel towards those who are today promoted as our media gurus.

The comment sparked by the commentary written by Mathew Ingram that appeared on the GigaOM website yesterday afternoon.

Under the headline Why we should defend the changes at the Times-Picayune Ingram defends Advance Publications from its critics. Advance announced in May that it would cut the print schedules at its papers in Louisiana and Alabama, and there would be the inevitable staff reductions.

Like most newspapers companies, the moves by the Newhouse family that own the papers was made under the guise of creating a "new digital-focused" company. And, as usual, no new digital initiatives were announced.

Yesterday, John Paton, CEO of Digital First Media, wrote a defense of the Advance moves on his own blog. His piece is headlined In Defense of the Times-Picayune and in it he admits that Advance may not have handled the announcement well but defends their actions believing that the company is moving forward with the moves. Forward to what is not explained, however. (And it can't be because, repeat after me, no new digital initiatives were announced.)

John Paton is a graduate of Ryerson University in Toronto.

Ingram, another Ryerson graduate, who worked as a business and technology writer at The Globe and Mail, was pretty quick to pick up on the Paton blog post, making one wonder who else got the memo.

Anyways, here is what I wrote:

Matthew, you might as well have cut and paste John Paton’s blog post here. I would call this more an aggregated commentary than one containing any original ideas.

What exactly are you defending here? That the moves by Advance are justifiable because, well, who knows what to do? That “no one is sure of the right answer.”

A layoff is not a digital initiative. Neither is rearranging the chairs in the newsroom nor changing the name of a company.

When Advance, or Digital First Media, start creating innovative, must-read digital products that attract readers and change the way advertisers look at these companies, then I will finally find something to defend in their their “digital initiatives.”
Notice that I immediately misspelled Mathew's name? I've done that before and he corrected me on it pretty quickly. This time I beat him to it.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Small Maryland custom publisher launches its first branded apps for its own trade magazine, Wash Trends

I definitely have a soft spot for small publishers, especially those on the B2B side of things. The challenges of publishing one or two titles, mixing in other services, and still coming out on top are daunting. Adding to those now are how to begin launching one's own mobile or tablet apps.
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If you've ever worked in the B2B publishing business you know that any industry, any profession, can be the subject of a trade publication. I started out on the construction side of things, which is pretty mainstream as far as B2B media goes.

Wash Trends, published by Bay Media Inc. out of Severna Park, Maryland, covers car washes. And now it has is own apps for the iPhone and iPad in the App Store.

The apps, I assume, are originating out of their printer or else Blue Toad, as the ever present tagline of "includes patent-pending Media Deck technology" has been added to the end of the app description. I see that line used on the apps coming out of RR Donnelley or Blue Toad.

But where ever the source of the development, the publisher here has made sure their apps appeared under their own name, Bay Media, rather then the vendors. The seller is listed as Patricia Troy, who just happens to be the CEO of the company.
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The iPhone app is called WashTrends Magazine while the iPad app is called WashTrends as Apple forces each app to have its own unique name.

There is not much else to report here as the issues to be found inside are the typical replica edition faire dished out by these vendors.

The one unique feature I found inside was that before downloading the issue one is presented with an opportunity to download whatever multimedia material may be included. I downloaded several issues, each time choosing to include the added material. Not surprisingly, though, no such actual material ended up being included with the issue.

The app does not allow you to download issues without subscribing, but there is no charge for subscribing.

I wonder how many car wash owners own an iPad or iPhone? That would be a hard number to discover. But now, at least, those owners can read all about their industry on their devices, right?

New Nielsen report looks at advertising in Q1 from a global perspective, sees print's continuing weakness in Europe & North America, strong Internet gains in Europe

The latest Nielsen Global AdView Pulse report, which looks at worldwide ad trends in the first quarter of this year, finds that Internet advertising continues to be a bright spot, with growth of 12.1 percent, with Europe, Latin America and the Middle East and Africa reporting double digit growth in the category.

While newspaper advertising actually recorded a modest 3.1 percent increase over the same period one year ago, declines were seen in both North America and Europe. Magazine ad performance was even worse, decline 1.4 percent overall, with North America and Europe again recording the biggest declines.

The Nielsen report uses a number of external data sources in order to gather its global information, and covers television, radio, cinema and outdoor advertising (in addition to print and Internet).

The summary report can be downloaded for free at the Nielsen website upon registering.
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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Next Issue Media launches its digital newsstand for the iPad; alliance between major publishers takes two years to launch a product that has a chance to attract readers

The digital alliance between major publishers Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corporation and Time Inc. has often reminded me of those football follies, where the team fumbles the ball and camera follows along as the ball goes bouncing here and there and no one seems able to get their hands on the things. It may be funny to watch, but when you are in the middle of the scrum things seem pretty desperate.

In December of 2009, can you believe, I first wrote about the new alliance between the publishing giants. At that time I wondered if the new initiative was "more an attempt to head off any efforts by Apple or Google or Amazon to become the default marketplace for digital magazines."

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Users of the Next Issue app must first go online to create an account.
The original press release mentioned "portable digital devices," making it clear that the publishers were quite aware of what Apple had in mind and were already plotting their own solution. Next Issue Media may be considered then as the end result of major publishers concerned that their industry would become the next segment effected by Apple (re: music).

Recounting the missteps taken by Next Issue Media makes clear that the company has done everything it can be work around Apple. It's first launch of a digital newsstand was exclusive to the Samsung Galaxy Tab. That effort began in May of 2011, a year and half after the announcement of the alliance – pretty fast by old media standards, disastrously slow by new media standards. And, really, the Galaxy Tab?

One year later, this April, an Android app was launched. That app appears to be suffering from the fragmentation of the Android platform with users complaining that the app is broken by Jelly Bean, the latest flavor of Android.

Now, finally, Next Issue Media has launched an iPad app. Simply called Next Issue, the app is like that from Zinio: a shell app that allows your access to your account, which you must create online, which then allows you to read your magazines through your tablet.

The whole mechanism is designed to bypass Apple's systems: you can not create an account through the app, you can not pay for anything through the app.

The point of differentiation for Next Issue is its pricing model: readers can subscribe to individual magazines through their service, buy individual issues, or buy one of two plans that offer a whole range of magazines – $9.99 per month for Unlimited Basic, or $14.99 for Unlimited Premium that includes Entertainment Weekly, People, Sports Illustrated, The New Yorker, TIME.

(Those who download the app get a one month free trial for signing up and entering their credit card information.)

Media app etiquette: the rules of the game are being written on the fly by publisher and developers

Sometimes its good to take a step back and remember that this whole app game is new to everyone. Only four years ago Apple opened up the iPhone for media app development, but since then there has been a new OS every year and lots of revisions and updates, not to mention new beta versions. (Let's not even talk about what the Android side of things looks like.)

So everyone is learning. But there are some rules of the road that are developing that media people should begin to understand.

One of those lessons is to make sure you tell your readers what the latest update is all about. Update information appears under the "What's New in Version XX" section of the app description inside the App Store.

The most common term found under "What's New" is without a doubt "bug fixes." The phrase has been around as long as "apps," though its often a source of frustration to end users – which 'bugs' were fixed? An update that takes care of "bugs" is obviously good, but a bit more specificity would be appreciated.

Some developers are masters of the update, writing novellas about all the new features and fixes to be found in their latest release.

A simple guide to app description writing is set by Marco Arment, the developer of Instapaper. I really like his app description.

First, Arment tells you what the app is about – what does it do, why do you need it. Then he lists the feature, then more details. Finally he sells the app a bit by including the positive reviews and awards the app has received.

If Instapaper is in the "Hall of Fame" of apps, his app description should be, as well.

As for his "What's New" section, Arment goes for the bullet approach – a short list of new features or improvements, followed inevitably by "miscellaneous bug fixes."

Hearst should take note. Their update section looks like it was written by their PR agency.

This is the update information included in this morning's update for Cosmopolitan Magazine - tell me if you can spot the new features or fixes issued today:
Thank you for your feedback! We take your comments and suggestions into consideration with every update to our app, and continue to make enhancements, improve customer service, and make it easier than ever to find your favorite issues of Cosmopolitan. Please update to benefit from the lastest improvements, and please keep the feedback coming.
Well, that was informative.

Hearst is one of those major magazine companies that has decided to charge all digital readers to access issues rather than allowing current print subscribers free access. They know that this is the single biggest complaint to be found inside the App Store.

But app etiquette says the "What's New" section is for what's new. You can't put a smiley face on things and expect your readers to play along.

The Weather Channel's recently released iPad app update offers a couple of other lessons. Although many developers have their own favorite weather app, the app from the mainstream source, The Weather Channel for iPad, is a damn good app.

But the new update apparently crashes. Users inside the App Store are ripping the app savagely. Is this a continuation of the problem Apple had last week with app updates, or something caused by the developer? Who knows, but it is not that uncommon for an app update to lead to crashes. Sometimes a clean install is necessary, sometimes a new bug has been introduced.

But the first review of the app update hits on another issue: the app itself is over 100 MB in size. Now it may be the case that this app hit the 100 MB level a while ago, but keeping app sizes down is considered good form.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Pandora updates its iOS app, but update has some users confused as where to find the new features

When is an update not really an update? When the update is for a universal app, but the update only effects one platform.

Pandora has issued just such an update this weekend and it has some users a little confused.
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The update is pretty killer (or "sweet" if you prefer). Here is what the update adds or improves:

  • Visual refresh and design enhancements
  • Full lyrics for the songs we play
  • Artist biographies
  • Detailed track features from the Music Genome Project
  • Song history: rate, bookmark, or buy previously played tracks
  • Explicit lyrics controls
  • Start a new station directly from the Now Playing screen
  • Simplified sign-in and registration screens
  • Reduced battery usage
All good stuff. But the catch is that it applies only to the mobile side of the app – so only iPhone and iPod touch users will see the improvements.

This has led to some users complaining about not see lyrics, for instance, when they use Pandora on their iPad. Pandora, it should be noted, makes it pretty clear in the app description, but this is the danger of universal apps, I suppose.

Why Pandora didn't build in the lyrics feature, for instance, into the iPad version is a bit perplexing, but one has to assume iPad users will soon get lyrics, as well.

The Internet radio market is competitive, what with Spotify now in the U.S. market. Of course, the two companies have two different approaches – with different analysts predicting which company will succeed. In the meantime, however, Pandora will have to keep its customers happy by constantly improving its service and updating its apps.

A few thoughts on designing for smaller tablets, as well as those endless Apple small tablet rumors

Designing digital editions from print products is a royal pain, let's face it. Vendors may provide easy solutions, but the any added costs or added work is still more than many small to mid-sized publishers bargained for when they got into this business.

The introduction of both the iPhone and then the iPad, while creating new opportunities, also is challenging the ways production has been designed. Many companies have been downsizing their art direction staffs for so long that the idea of suddenly staffing up is, well, unnatural.
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Because of this, some publishers have been taking it one platform at a time – develop a tablet edition for the iPad first, add other platforms later. Vendors are trying to help but creating easy ways to port-over their digital designs for other platforms.

A great example of this is Mag+'s latest release which adds support for iPhone apps.

For me, the iPhone is not an attractive platform for magazines. I rather loudly laugh when I see replica editions on an iPhone. Do publishers really expect readers to enjoy the experience?

But what about smaller tablets? Should designers see a 7-inch tablet as a completely new platform that deserves is own native designs? Possibly, but the reality of designing over and over again surely will lead you to make a compromise. Would you put a mobile edition on a small tablet, or put your iPad edition on the smaller tablet?

Until recently, when I've seen very few exciting mobile magazine products, I would have advocated designing for the iPad and then simply porting over the end product for the 7-inch tablet. But I think I would really enjoy reading the British Journal of Photography's mobile edition on a small tablet. The BJP mobile edition is not as stripped down as a Kindle Edition, and the larger display size would make fonts easier to read. (See full report on the new app here.)

Now, I understand that digital production vendors offer outputs to all sorts of platforms – what I'm talking about here is not what is possible, but what is desirable.

I've been running in my mind a scenario where I am discussing with my art director what sort of digital edition we would produce for a new Apple 7-inch tablet. I would like to think that this art director would take on the challenge, but it is just as likely that they would say "in what hour or what day do I have the time to design yet another digital edition?" Taking the mobile route, that is to say, the good mobile route, may be the way to go.



So, Apple is going to come out with a 7-inch tablet. Well, at least, the tech sites are saying so. Their credibility on such matters is less than convincing. But after proclaiming this would happen for two years it looks like the tech sites will finally be right.

I think Apple will launch a smaller tablet for two reasons: first, I'm sure Apple knows that Amazon and others will be launching larger tablets soon – I doubt they are shaking in their boots, but competing at the smaller end of the tablet market is a good way to fight back; second, a smaller tablet reaches a somewhat different market, the eBook first market, if you will.

I really do not enjoy my Kindle Fire for newspapers and magazines as much as the iPad. But the 7-inch size is still very nice for books. I like reading books on my iPad, usually in landscape, but a lightweight smaller version of the iPad would certainly be a desirable platform for many.

I guess we'll see later this year. But in the meantime, you know what they say about no pictures?

The Boston Globe updates its 'ePaper' edition; update also points to future changes

Whe The Boston Globe released its "ePaper" edition in March of this year, I pointed out in my post about the new app that the company was calling the new digital edition a replica when it really was not, at least not in the traditional use of the term.
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Instead, what the app delivered was a combination of replica with native layouts. The compromise works because it allows the reader to view the overall digital newspaper much as they would the print version, but then read the stories in a format specifically designed for the device.

This weekend the paper released an update for The Boston Globe ePaper which includes some nice new features:

  • Full Retina Display optimization for iPad 3
  • Improved scrolling on the iPhone
  • Performance improvements and general bug fixes.
  • Saving articles to Evernote and Instapaper
  • Instant translations of full publications in up to 12 languages
  • Auto-translation of all publications into a specific language with the ability to specify exceptions
Sadly, being an English speaker, I can't really test out the translations. But I can tell you that if other publications incorporated translation they would find an eager audience. The tablet, and Apple's Newsstand, in particular, could be a real game changer if publishers adopted built-in translation.
though one wonders what took the Globe so long to update their app for the new iPad.

The app description also points to future changes. The description, for instance, says that "advertising inserts are not currently included" – an odd statement to make unless one was trying to fend off criticism about the lack of inserts, or hopefully because the digital team is seriously trying to address this issue.

Last September a lot of press was given to the AP's iCircular effort, but predictably the effort seems to be proceeded at newspaper speed rather than digital. (Also, the emphasis on phones seems to miss the opportunity to help newspaper publishers with their tablet editions, though I suppose any mobile solution could easy be incorporated into a tablet product.)

The app description also points out that the Sunday Comics will be coming to the app in June. Oops.



Here is my original (March) video created on The Boston Globe ePaper app: