Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Quick Look: VICE Magazine launches iPad edition

Some times native designed tablet editions go too far, some times replica editions don't go far enough. Part of the challenge for magazine publisher with print editions is just how far to go with their tablet editions – do they go all out with animated covers and lots of video, or tone it down and create hybrid editions that look very much like print but reformat the editorial pages.

The new tablet edition for VICE Magazine reformats the magazine into both portrait and landscape reading modes, makes reading a joy on the iPad, but doesn't break much new ground when it comes tablet magazine design. And you know what, that's OK. I believe. If you enjoy reading this title you will continue to enjoy to read it on your iPad. In fact, you'll probably prefer it.

There is not much wrong with this new app except its app description that is far too short. "The Definitive Guide to Enlightening Information" – that's it, the entire app description. The good news is that this can be corrected.

Because of the lack of multimedia content here the issue I downloaded is only a bit over 100 MB, pretty small for any native tablet edition, especially one with a landscape mode. The app uses the increasingly common practice of scrolling with stories, and swiping to reach the next story. Where there is artwork that is full page only portrait the art is oversized in landscape so the reader must scroll to see the rest of the art. Occasionally there are picture galleries here, as well.

Simple, it works, it's free, what is there not to like?