MagDesigner has a new home!

July 4, 2010

New home for

If you’re reading this, then you shouldn’t be. You see, this here blog is now old hat. It has been magically turned into

It’s bigger, better and a lot more blue. There are all the usual news stories and eMag round ups, but now the with the edition of platform reviews, eMag reviews, glossary and features with lots more content coming over the months.

It really is your one stop shop for all things to do with digital magazines.

This WordPress blog will more than likely be ignored from now on (you’ve been good to me though…)

So, get yer ass over there, bookmark it, subscribe, get rss feeds and remember to tell your friends about!

Click HERE!


Augmented reality graces Grazia cover

March 23, 2010

One of Britain’s most popular handbag fillers Grazia, launched today with a very interesting marketing gimmick. If you buy the issue (or steal it) you can access special augmented reality content through use of a webcam or iPhone.

Simply go to a specific web address, hold the magazine up to a web cam and watch cover star Florence Welch come to life and sing & dance. It’s all very clever and it’s a grand marketing tool as this story has made all the news sites and will no doubt help shift a few more copies.

The interesting thing here is the iPhone compatibility. I have no doubt that augmented reality systems will make a big impact over the coming years, and devices such as the iPhone or Android capable phones seem to handle it pretty well. But when you can combine a 3G enabled mobile device with a print advert or piece of packaging we will start to see some truly innovative advertising concepts.

For more info regarding some possible augmented reality systems, check out this talk from

Make an iPhone App the easy way

February 15, 2010

One of the few interesting things to come out of this years Macworld show is Yapper. For a mere 99 of your wacky American dollars you can create an iPhone App online, in minutes based on an RSS feed. And of course it works on the iPad.

It’s incredibly easy, it’s all online and it must be the simplest, fastest and cheapest way of getting your branded content onto an iPhone App.

Don’t take my word for it (like you would!) check out the video then head on over to and get creating!

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No it’s a comic book reading App

February 6, 2010

Panelfly have announced an iPad version of their recent and popular iPhone comic book reading application.

Check out the iPhone video above then go and download it, not just because the cute girl tells you to, but because it’s really good.

If the iPad version is like this then it could really make a difference to the comic industry. Comics have had a bit of a decline in the last few years despite the occasional movie inspired resurgence. The iPad and other tablets could help tun that around. Publishers can release titles through the free Panelfly App, which acts like a reader and portal to the vast library of titles available. The App offers zoom functionality, bookmarking and a contents view but most excitingly it can zoom in on comic panels and scroll along in sequence, making it the ultimate portable comic book reader. Except for a comic book obviously. !BANG!

Once again, as with Pixel Mags this could not only help existing publishers but also create opportunities with smaller more independent companies. The only drawback so far is that the damn thing isn’t available in the UK, no doubt down to pubslishing logistics, but it sucks anyway. English people like comic books too! !KABOOOOM!

I love comics; they’re the perfect blend of art and story telling. The protagonist always excels in the face of adversity so it’s great to see Panelfly succeed, it’s a really nice App and the panel reader capability is a perfect solution to the iPhones size. I love this App and can’t wait to see it on the iPad, it’s gonna rock! POW!

Whilst we’re on the subject of comics check out Mal Tokyo, an awesome online comic combining photos, text and videos. As far as I’m aware only one issue was done, and that was a couple of years back. But it is a sneak peak to what could be achieved… Mal Tokyo

(Please note: I make no apologies for writing one of the worst headlines ever.)

Panelfly website

Follow Panelyfly on Twitter

Follow MagDesigner on Twitter

Magazines on the iPad. Now.

February 2, 2010

So you wanna be first to get a magazine on the iPad? Well you can’t because it’s already been done. Not only will many magazines and papers (like the New York Times) be launching iPad specific Apps but existent iPhone Apps now pose a serious threat to those that have not embraced the iPhone’s huge success.

Pixel Mags are a London, New York and LA based electronic publishing company that specialise in turning print ready PDFs into iPhone Apps. They currently publish Mac User, Dirt, iCreate, Total911 and Impora amongst others. As we know the iPad can run existing iPhone Apps at double the size making PDF based digital editions much more readable, desirable and most importantly; available.

Pixel Mags also offer a lot of in-App features like search functionality, interactive content, in-App purchasing and good old page turning effects. It’s still a little way off the likes of Sports International’s glitzy demo, but what Pixel Mags are doing is bridging an important gap and making the transition for publishers as minimal as possible.

Until publishers acknowledge they need to bring stuff like this in house, Pixel Mags are a damn safe bet with a really good product that should hopefully work great on an iPad. They also have a sweeeet website, so click on the pic above and go give them the time of day…

Pixel Mags aren’t the only dudes making iPhone Apps though, Zinio have also released their own App:

Zinio have a whole host of titles already available on the iPhone, which means they are will be available for the iPad upon it’s release day. It’s unclear how either of these companies plan to adapt to the new iPad and what they have planned for future Apps. But in the meantime they are both the most viable way of getting a half decent, interactive magazine onto either of Apple’s glorious devices.