Even Apple Can’t Get Rid of Print.

Posted by Lindsay Scarpello.

Remember when Apple unveiled the iPad? The term “iTampon” plagued Twitter and journalists everywhere (including Drake professors) hailed Steve Jobs as the savior of magazines–despite the terrible name.

Flash forward. According to Gizmodo, the iPad’s promise to revolutionize the way we read magazines in the form of one app consumers would subscribe to is currently unheard of. Yes, the iPad has a digital bookstore, but we’re still waiting for a viable digital newsstand that won’t mean a cluttered mess of news and magazine apps.

Subscriptions are apparently in the works, but if Apple and various publishers don’t agree on what to do with subscriber info and how to split revenue, it might take a long time to get all your favorite magazines delivered straight to your iPad, clutter-free. So much for that print-revolution publishers were praying for.

So this begs the question: are we really in need of a print revolution? Sure, the iPad will probably eventually get a digital newsstand (and it will probably be really, really slick). That doesn’t mean, however, that people aren’t still buying the good ol’ hard copy.

They drill it into us as journalism students: magazines offer a unique experience for the reader that can’t be replaced by any other medium. I say print will never just die (not for magazines, anyway). What do you think? Will the iPad replace print mags if Apple ever offers a digital newsstand? Does the fact that magazines on the iPad aren’t successful now give any indication about how they’ll do in the future? Which way would you rather read your favorite magazine–the “old-fashioned” way or on the glossy screen of an iPad?

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3 responses to “Even Apple Can’t Get Rid of Print.

  1. I definitely do not see print magazines going out of business. I would much rather hold a magazine in my hands then read it on the iPad. Mostly this is because the information it contains is one of the less important reasons why I pick up a magazine, mostly I enjoy the visual element. I even enjoy the magazines that have an advertisement on practically every other page, because I just love to see the vividness and the way different things can be portrayed. I think while the iPad has a visual element, it will never be the same as a tangible magazine.
    -Hayley M.-

  2. I would always much rather read a print version than an online or iPad version of a magazine. Plus, print versions are more affordable, disposable, and convenient for those of us who can’t afford or just don’t want an iPad. I don’t see everyone carrying one around now and I doubt I’ll see that anytime soon because the iPad can’t replace computers.

  3. Those looking for one magic bullet to “save” magazines will be disappointed.

    The iPad is still so new that magazines are scrambling to find the best way to present their content on it. We may like magazines on iPads better when magazines nail how to best use it.

    And when the iPad price comes down.

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