Apple iPad Magazines: Waste Of Time And Money?

Apple have really been pushing the sales of magazines on the iPad and iPhone, perhaps this was a ‘green’ way of doing things. On all accounts, magazines on a tablet PC such as the iPad should have worked but this doesn’t seem to be the case.

The magazines sales have quickly plummeted since their release. Engadget.com’s Laura June, says that one magazine called Wired on the opening download day hit figures of over 100,000 back in June. Sticking with Wired for a second, their sales between July and September were hitting 31,000 downloads, but since then they have dropped further. October and November downloads were at the low 20,000s showing a steep decline.

It isn’t just Wired that are going through this; it is most magazines that were willing to submit their numbers, including Glamour, GQ and Vanity Fair. This comes as quite a surprise to us at OSM, as the number of units of iPad and iPhone has increased considerably over the previous few months, especially with the run up to the holiday season.

Bearing all of this in mind, there is a question that we want to put to you. Are these magazines a waste of time and money or going forward do you see the sales/downloads increasing again? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

  • Robert Livingston

    I want a subscription with prices comparable to the print version. Then I am in. I have already prepared by not renewing my print subscriptions.

  • http://www.cyclelogicpress.com Neil Anderson

    I buy my magazine subscriptions through Zinio and read them on my iPad. Are these subscriptions counted in the numbers?

  • Steve W

    I predicted that the iPad would do to magazines what the iPod did to albums. Publishers are resisting! Why fight it?

    I also predicted that the killer iPad app would be a reader produced by Publisher's Clearing House. What are they waiting for?

  • Edgar

    The problem is pricing. The iPad offers the medium, they have to put a price that will sell. I have been reading the news on the web on my MacBook for a long time now. The iPad is obviously immensely better because it's more portable, lighter, has the right format, interface, software, it's on instantly and you can use you fingers to move through pages, etc. I, like everyone is all for saving the publishing industry, but I think the publishing industry took us for fools. They thought they could charge more for the electronic version of the magazines than the print version. They are saving on paper, ink, distribution, printing costs, etc. but they expect us to pay more. They don't have to wait for an agreement with Apple for a subscription price, just price the issues at the subscription price and presto!, I will buy it. This is not print where you have to offset costs on a per price issue basis. it costs the same for electronic issue. Also, the content has to be good, it's nice to get extra features, like video or innovative interactive stuff, but the articles are what matters most. Just like in print. After all it's still a magazine, or a newspaper. If I want TV, I watch TV.