Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Next Issue Media launches its digital newsstand app on Windows 8, as app count grows for the new platform

Next Issue Media has launched its digital newsstand on the Windows 8 platform. The company is a joint venture between Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp., and Time Inc., and it can be rather safely said that Microsoft would have seen having Next Media with its popular magazine titles on its new tablet platform.

"We’re excited to bring our unlimited access plans and the convenience of the Next Issue app to Windows 8 devices," Morgan Guenther, CEO of Next Issue Media is quoted in the company's announcement. "With Windows 8, we’re able to offer an outstanding user experience including pinning, multi-tasking with snap view, and more."

Within Windows 8 readers can pin their favorite titles to the Start screen and live tiles with rotating covers of the latest issues will be coming soon, as well.

Readers on the Windows 8 platform can access Next Issue Media titles for 30 days free of charge. The two subscription plans remain at $9.99 per month for the Unlimited Basic plan, and $14.99 for the Unlimited Premium plan. Titles available only through the premium option are Entertainment Weekly, Golf World, New York Magazine, Sports Illustrated, The New Yorker and Time.

The promotional video is pretty interesting if you really look closely at it. The tablet seen is held in landscape for most of the video until near the end when for a short while it is seen in portrait. Scanning titles is promoted over the actual digital magazines to be found inside, and Next Issue Media continues to push the idea of the PC reading experience.

One criticism of early Android tablets was that they felt more natural in landscape – think the Motorola XOOM. One challenge for Microsoft will be to successfully market their platform as a good reading experience, every bit as good as the Kindle Fire and iOS. App count, though, probably won't be an issue as Microsoft already has over 45,000 apps available for the platform.

Here is the new Next Issue Media promotional video. I advise turning the sound down a bit as the music is rather obnoxious: