The iPad: "everybody needs to calm down"

Andrew Losowsky has some very smart analysis on magazines and the iPad on his blog Magtastic Blogsplosion. It's called "Why everybody needs to calm down." Read the whole thing, but his takeaway:

* "Anything gorgeous will most likely be eyewateringly expensive to produce"

* "If you're looking to make a fast buck, creating a new magazine on the iPad is not the answer"

* "Why will people pay to read your magazine app when they have the option, with no effort at all, to be on the internet, watching movies, reading books, checking email on the very same device?"

  • Brandon Kavulla

    Pre-rendered is not publication.

    Genius. Someone said it.

    The video game comparison is brilliant.

    How many times have we seen incredible video game commercials only to get the thing home and it's about 50% of what we saw advertised?

    (of course one could argue that hasn't seemed to hurt game sales, as people seem to have grown to expect to be lied to in advertising. Does YOUR Big Mac look like the picture? Has it ever?)

    Have to say, whenever I see the latest moving cover, moving feature, or moving photo I am amazed and excited and jealous! Love, love, love the potential.

    Then a few giant gorillas in the room start grunting at me.

    1) I am watching a MOVIE DEMO on my slick, fast, powerful computer at work with a turbo internet connection. I am not sitting with my ipad by a lake in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with no wifi or 3G. Hell, I can't easily text someone up there and I'm going to be able to watch a hollywood hottie finish her pole dance on the cover of magazine xyz on my ipad? (hey...i hope so....but you know...)

    2) The cover shoot and feature is now a small movie. Very cool, but are they going to do that 10-12 times a year for every cover? Ya know, at the end of the day keeping the lights on at any business is about charging people more for your product than it cost to make it. That's called profit.

    He is also SOOO right about how much this feels exactly like the internet boom of the late 90's. It's uncanny. Everyone scrambling and spending and speculating because no one wants to be left behind and everyone wants to be the first and to be seen as the "inventor" or the "innovator".

    Ultimately some amazing new things will be coming out of all this and i am always rooting for good, innovative work and the people doing it.

    I just fear we will see a version of what always happens with any new technology; the advent of computers, image editors and font programs in the early 90's and the web boom of the mid to late nighties. A little bit of real-world permanent innovation, and a whole lot of mess.

  • Grant Glas

    Well put Jeremy. My thoughts exactly.

  • Josh Klenert


  • Jeremy LaCroix

    Out here in SF I can tell you everyone (especially those working digitally) is not drinking the iPad Koolaid.

    Sure it will be cool, Don't get me wrong I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE me some Apple, my beef is with publishers when it comes to producing this type of rich content for the web there is no infrastructure in place to pay for it's production and frankly from what I know/see I do not see publishers staffing up for this, which tells me they are not serious.

    I feel like (print) publishers do not understand the amount of work it takes to do this right (or at least to satisfy a very needy, selfish and fickle digital audience) and they think they can re purpose their already overclocked magazine staffs to produce it. They are wrong and I'm afraid they are going to burn out some super talented magazine designers in the process.

    If you don't know how to make a good looking magazine and you don't already know how to make a high performing website your ass will not magically be saved by tablet computing unless you staff the production of it with some very talented, savvy individuals who can focus on creating a new and rich experience.

  • Grant Glas

    What if you make an app for publications that is easy to update and amazing to interact with using Apple's SDK?? I have not seen one video online doing this. I'll be really interested to see GQ's iPad edition Saturday.

    Interesting article everyone should at least skim through:

    Apple could kill Adobe packaging programs... which would hurt, especial Condé Nast. CEO Chuck Townsend told Peter Kafka of All Things D he is uneasy developing complex iPad editions like Wired's at other titles, due to Apple's antipathy toward Flash.

    I like Andrew's take on things. I think larger company's will find solutions by tapping into individual developer's knowledge.

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