Newsweek to cease print edition, go digital-only with iPad & other platforms

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
The rising cost of print has forced Newsweek to go digital-only starting in 2013, leaving its iPad app as one of the few ways to read the nearly 80-year-old publication.

The new page for Newsweek was announced by the publication and its parent company, The Daily Beast, in a post to its official website on Thursday. Editor-in-Chief Tina Brown and CEO Baba Shetty cited the "challenging economics of print publishing and distribution."

"We are transitioning Newsweek, not saying goodbye to it," they wrote. "We remain committed to Newsweek and to the journalism that it represents. This decision is not about the quality of the brand or the journalism ? that is as powerful as ever."

Shetty and Brown said Newsweek has seen a rapidly growing reader base on tablets such as Apple's market dominating iPad. They believe digital storefronts—such as Apple's Newsstand for iOS, as well as the Kindle, Zinio and Nook stores—are "superb" platforms for the publication.

As of Thursday, "Newsweek for iPad" was the No. 45 most popular free application on the iPad App Store, and it ranked No. 37 among the top grossing applications. Users have rated it an average of 2.5 stars out of 5, criticizing it for technical issues such as crashes and missing stories.

Newsstand


Apple's Newsstand debuted last year with the launch of iOS 5. Some companies, such as magazine publisher Future, have seen strong initial success on the iPad. One study released earlier this year estimated that total iPad users spend an average of $70,000 per day on Newsstand content.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 32
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,274member
    And this is the future. One day paper will be like papyrus ...
  • Reply 2 of 32


    Wow...  This is huge.  The ones that will be earth shattering will be TIME and SI.

  • Reply 3 of 32
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,387member
    And this is the future. One day paper will be like papyrus ...

    Good one!

    Could this also be because of the Oct 23rd announcement? Emphasizing on the importance of digital publications; Greenpeace-safe, easier for school kids backs/bags et cetera...
  • Reply 4 of 32
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,411member
    I'd buy that for a dollar!

    Not really...
  • Reply 5 of 32

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post





    Good one!

    Could this also be because of the Oct 23rd announcement? Emphasizing on the importance of digital publications; Greenpeace-safe, easier for school kids backs/bags et cetera...


    HAHAHAGreenpeaceHAHA No. It's their massive decline in readership and failure to procure sustainable advertising revenue. 


     


     


    edit: forgot to mention irrelevance.

  • Reply 6 of 32
    vorsosvorsos Posts: 302member


    My biggest problem with iOS magazines is the implementation. Things are cool on Apple's end, but the publications themselves are enormous! I understand there are hardcore egos in the graphic layout biz, who demand a pixel-perfect recreation of their print pages, but I don't always have the bandwidth or storage space for 0.5 GB per issue.


     


    Marco Arment's new magazine is how to properly make iOS publications. My hope is that since Newsweek is going entirely digital, they will no longer be held to the demands of print layout, and can provide accessible issues.

  • Reply 7 of 32
    mytdavemytdave Posts: 430member


    I don't think it's so much "rising costs of print" as it is people just aren't buying printed items much anymore.  I for one haven't purchased a printed magazine in years.  I get all my info electronically now.

  • Reply 8 of 32
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,477member
    When you download the Newsweek app for iPhone it appears to be in Chinese. I don't get it.
  • Reply 9 of 32
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,167member
    If they do a legit app and not just images or PDFs that are bloated and don't zoom etc well and price it decently this could work. It might also help if they can do it in some way where you can subscribe once and see the issues in any platform, even switch. So like I get it now in my iPad but later I buy a Kindle Fire, I can just log in somehow and see all the issues from my iPad days. Or even see them on a website.
  • Reply 10 of 32
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,499member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post



    When you download the Newsweek app for iPhone it appears to be in Chinese. I don't get it.




    Maybe that's normal.

  • Reply 11 of 32
    mj1970mj1970 Posts: 9,002member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KindredMac View Post


    Wow...  This is huge.



     


    Not really. Newsweek is dying (circulation down about 65% over the past 10 years!) This is a last ditch effort for them.


     


    That said, I agree print will eventually go all or mostly digital. But Newsweek is not the standard to judge by here.

  • Reply 12 of 32


    If I can store issues as well as access the archives while my subscription is current, then the all digital magazine is a good idea, especially if I can access it from multiple digital devices.


     


    It has been years since I purchased a magazine too. I only read books off line, and that is because a suitable digital copy at a reasonable price isn't available.


     


    The problems I have with digital magazines is the layout. Often links aren't right, the navigation is just bad, and image slide shows or videos don't work properly. It's as if they don't have a single web designer calling the shots. A good web site is barely noticeable because everything works. A bad web site really sticks out. Magazine sites (the ones I've used) usually have problems. This needs to be sorted out so that people will enjoy returning to the magazine instead of just being there long enough to get the information that is needed.

  • Reply 13 of 32
    vorsosvorsos Posts: 302member


    Cracked was once a magazine. Just sayin. It all depends on how well the Newsweek team adapts.

  • Reply 14 of 32
    That's funny!

    Nobody questioned their falling circulation. I think it is their blatant left leaning bias that turns off many readers.

    Moving to the digital will not help as long as they stay biased.

    I think Time and NY Times will follow this path for the same reason :-)

    Die Walkure
  • Reply 15 of 32
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,477member


    It's hard for weekly print magazines to compete with free, real-time news.

  • Reply 16 of 32
    poochpooch Posts: 768member
    The rising cost of print has forced <em>Newsweek</em> to go digital-only starting in 2013, leaving its iPad app as one of the few ways to read the nearly 80-year-old publication.

    riiiiight ... the rising cost of print ...
  • Reply 17 of 32

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    It's hard for weekly print magazines to compete with free, real-time news.



     


    I think you could say that about most magazines.  By the time they get to press it's old news. Even something like the TV guide needs to get with the digital age. It would probably be cake for them to go create a TV Guide Features that is either a paid section of their site/app or a magazine using a layout Entertainment Weekly does and still be able to fold in some video clips etc. Many magazines could go that sort of way. Even perhaps being able to split up issues into smaller bits. Make each major section it's own 'magazine' so say someone that reads Newsweek for the cover features can get that and ignore the book reviews that they never read. 

  • Reply 18 of 32
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,274member
    diewalkure wrote: »
    That's funny!
    Nobody questioned their falling circulation. I think it is their blatant left leaning bias that turns off many readers.
    Moving to the digital will not help as long as they stay biased.
    I think Time and NY Times will follow this path for the same reason :-)
    Die Walkure

    Just for clarification ... is your logic therefore that the red states buy more right wing newspapers or they don't have or know how to use modern technology?
  • Reply 19 of 32


    I only read one magazine regularly and it's only available in the proprietary Zinio format. I resisted subscribing digitally for at least a year because of that, until I finally caved in. But I hate the idea that if the app goes away in a few years, all the back issues I paid for will go with it.


     


    Similarly with books, I would be much more likely to buy if they used a standard format. I currently have some books in iBooks and some in Kindle, the one magazine in Zinio, plus library books in Overdrive, none of which are compatible with each other. I would really prefer to be able to choose what app I use, and move my content between apps freely, like I can on the music side with MP3s. It doesn't make sense to use four different apps to read content.


     


    So, similar to a couple posts above, more openness in formats would speed adoption for me.

  • Reply 20 of 32
    I think Zinio%u2019s implementation of the e-mag concept is much better than Newsstand. The ability to zoom in and out of any page and the Text-only mode makes it way easier than Newsstand and even a printed magazine to read. Wonder why Newsstand doesn%u2019t allow its reader to pinch and zoom.
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