Thursday, April 4, 2013

Australian team creates unique photography magazine app that offers 'issues' and photo technique digital publications within the app's library offerings

The basic magazine app is, essentially, its own digital newsstand. Assuming a publisher does not issue a single editions app, such as the original TIME Magazine app, or the purposely designed single edition apps for ΜΟΥΣΑ (Mousa), most magazine apps are their own newsstands.

Some publishers have realized this and gone in a slightly different direction, using their newly created digital newsstands as their own store to offer publications other than just a main title.

Photique is a unique photography app, less a digital magazine, than a way of delivering photography publications.

The app is the creation of Nick Rains, Peter Eastway and Tony Redhead. Rains and Eastway are photographers and authors, while Redhead is a 360° panographer and iOS app developer. Together they have created Photique as a stand-alone app under the developer account name of Photique Publishing Pty Ltd.

"My business partners and I have been publishing hard copy magazines for the photography market here in Australia for the past dozen years or so," Rains informed me via email. "Newsstand sales diminished like everyone else, so we looked to digital delivery."

"We wanted to move away from the old subscription model where you get a fixed number of issues per year containing a fixed number of 'articles; whether you were interested in them all or not. We also wanted to add some depth and interactivity because the iPad offers such riches for the photography enthusiast - it's a marriage made in heaven in so many ways," Rains said.

Nick Rains
"Anyway, we created Photique, which is more of a portal to content than a newsstand style 'magazine' per se. The idea is to offer a wide range of content in a wide range of styles and at a wide range of price points, including free."

While it is true that the app does offer some free content, the true purpose of the app is to offer the instructional publications found inside the library. There are 15 editions on photo illustration, four on layers, individual editions on lighting, photo basics, photographing stars, etc. The issue on inkjet printing probably would be best for me if my wide format Epson hadn't started acting up. That one is priced at $4.99 inside the U.S. store.

The Oomph platform offers a nice issue preview mechanism. In many cases this is not taken advantage of, but in others the publisher has used the preview feature.

"I think we are heading in a new direction in some ways, certainly we are the only ones doing what we are doing on the Oomph platform - everyone else still thinks 'magazine', 'issues', 'subscription's etc. We are trying to be more versatile and more interesting," Rains said.