Project Magazine for iPad – Promised Content Updates Will Not Be Coming

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PromisesandReality

Image Source: angelapaige.com

I guess the publishers of Project magazine for iPad took a wrong turn at that crossroads of promises and reality. I finally got an answer back from my contact at Project, after asking why there were no new content updates at all – zero – in over a week, from a magazine that touted itself as ‘revolutionary’, claimed to be the standard-setter for iPad edtions, and promised this in terms of content refreshes:

PROJECT is a monthly magazine that will change daily, hourly – minute by minute at times – to give its global audience of early adopters a month of entertainment for less than the price of a decent cup of coffee.

That’ s an impressive promise – and sadly now it is confirmed that it’s also absolute ‘bollocks’ as one might say in Richard Branson’s home country. Just not true. Here’s the answer I got from Project about when we might expect to see any of these daily, hourly, minute-by-minute updates:

… this month the updates come in the form of comments, blog posts and the ‘Projected’ section of the magazine. For the next issue we’re looking at ways of adding whole new feature pages through the month.

How pathetic does that sound? I’d say very. So what is being updated in reality?  Comments – seriously??? That is user-generated content. And the blog. That is *not* an integral part of the magazine itself. It is the same as being fobbed off to any other iPad edition’s online site. Oh, and the ‘Projected’ section, I haven’t even seen in over a week of looking at the app.

So, for my money, the answer to what’s being updated in the app is … zero, nothing at all. And the publishers are ‘looking at’ ways of adding new pages in the next issue. That sounds like no real promise, which is just as well because all their original promises on this subject have proved utterly false.

Project is not a terrible title, or even a terrible iPad edition. It’s a pretty good one. But … it’s probably the most disappointing new iPad title to hit the App Store – purely because the publishers themselves created lofty expectations for it, and they’ve come nowhere near living up to them. They talked the talk – big-time – but they haven’t done any walking at all as yet.


Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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5 thoughts on “Project Magazine for iPad – Promised Content Updates Will Not Be Coming”

  1. Yup. Failed.

    So, basically what they are telling you is this:

    We had an idea for a new magazine. We thought long and hard about it in the traditional media sense, and thought we can bring something new to this whole media thing because we haven't done it before and we have the money to pay for really good developers and writers.

    Then they released the app, realized – WHOOPS… this isn't traditional media. This is new media and we came to the table with the old style approach of once a month updates, in world that is beginning to demand once a minute updates. So, its back to the drawing board to figure out how we can salvage our investment.

    My guess is… they'll team up with a few different sources for content, live update from the web and basically become a source controlled version of an RSS stream. Or, they'll just let it die and cut their losses. I've been saying it for a while – this is why newspapers are dying. Content comes at breakneck speed in the digital space. If CNN can break a story on Twitter at 9am, have it written up and on their site by 9:05am what good does it do me to finally find out about it THE NEXT DAY in the newspaper? And by the time your "monthly" magazine gets around to publishing an opinion on it – I've already digested opinions from 100 different sources (all well written pieces by the way) and could care less about your opinion by that point.

    1. Another thing to note is that this is not impossible to do well. USA Today is – really, genuinely – continually updated and feels like a proper iPad edition. El Pais is another big title that is continually updated and is an excellent iPad edition.

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