Digital Partnership finally announced…

Today see the official announcement of what we all knew was coming, a partnership between print publishers to help secure a future in digital magazines.

Hearst, Condé Nast, Time Inc, Meredith and News Corporation have formed an independent venture to help develop open standards for a new “digital storefront” and related technologies.

There are four parts to their agreement:

1) To create a highly featured common reading application capable of rendering the distinctive look and feel of each publication
2) To create a robust publishing platform optimized for multiple devices, operating systems and screen sizes
3) To create a consumer storefront offering an extensive selection of reading options
4) To create a rich array of innovative advertising opportunities

Beyond the publications of the equity partners, the venture will welcome other publishers to offer their content via this new digital platform. Publishers will derive revenue from content and advertising sales, as well as from print subscriptions.

For publishers and advertisers, the venture will offer an attractive, cost-efficient, consumer-focused environment. Advertisers will be able to utilize innovative formats that benefit from the highly engaging, interactive nature of this new medium. In addition to entirely new magazine and newspaper reading experiences, content selections may ultimately include books, comic books, blogs and other media.

The whole press release can be found here

So there we go, a big announcement indeed and a good one to end the year on. 2010 will be a significant year for eMags and digital publishing in general. What does this mean for smaller, more independent publishers? And how will some of the other bigger companies respond? What will the likes of Future, Bauer and Dennis do next year?

Only time shall tell…

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