MagDesigner has a new home!

July 4, 2010

New home for MagDesigner.net

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 www.MagDesigner.net

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!


Ceros Media take on the iPad

March 16, 2010

If ever there was a band wagon worth jumping upon it must be the iPad.
Ceros Media, already leader in the digital magazine publishing market have announced there iPad concept is coming soon. The Application is very simple, basically just a PDF reader with video capability. How this will fair against the likes of Pixel Mags remains to be seen, but with Ceros’ impressive market share of digital mags it’ well worth keeping a beady little eye on.


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

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Imagine Publishing and Pixel Mags get the ball rolling

February 6, 2010

In a bold move that should be saluted, Imagine Publishing have decided to release all their current print titles on the iPhone, using an App made by those rather interesting folk at Pixel Mags.

In the last few days it seems Pixel Mags have gone from little known magazine publisher to the most promising way of getting magazines onto the upcoming iPad.

In a process that can only be described as a piece of piss, print ready PDFs are uploaded and published in a page flip App. Customers download the magazine branded Pixel Mags viewer then download subsequent issues either on a subscription basis or individually. Once downloaded it’s a simple affair of tap to zoom, pinch to get a closer look and swiping to turn a page. Yo can search, send recommendations to friends and add bookmarks to your favourite pages.

It works well despite the App itself crashing on me a couple of times. I do however find it too much of a pain in the arse to read, these magazines just aren’t designed to be read on a screen the size of a squirrels skateboard (official scale of measure). If you can get your head around that iPhone mags are here.

Where Pixel Mags come up trumps though is that it already works on the iPad. Because Mr Jobs built in a pixel-doubling feature it will take up nearly all the iPad screen making it much, much more suitable and no doubt easier to read. My only concern would be how well the PDF pages (especially text) renders at double the size. We’ll soon see.

Imagine publish iCreate, Linux User, Digital Photographer and a whole host of other tech related titles, they are the fastest growing specialist publisher in the UK. It’s great to see people jumping on the iPad bandwagon, the more people that do so, the more likely it is to reach its final destination.

Pixel Mags offer a quick and effective way of getting magazines onto iPhones and subsequently iPads. Zinio offer similar services with more bespoke content like video, but to be honest it’s nice to see a smaller company making good software. In this interesting time for publishing I see a lot more independent companies in a good position to compete with the big corporations, and hopefully that will lead to a resurgance in creativity and better products.

According to Twitter posts Pixel Mags are also working on something top secret. Hopefully I may get a sneaky bit of info about this to share with you all, but I’d put money on it being an improved magazine App specifically for the iPad.

Click to see the Imagine press release
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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.