Ad Age has taken a look at the fledgling market for magazine titles on the iPad, and which titles and types of titles are achieving some early success.
Not surprisingly, it looks like tech-related titles are leading the way, with Wired Magazine at the top of the charts so far.
The first issue of Wired on the iPad sold 105,000 copies, according to Ad Age. That was significantly higherthan the print sales for the same issue. Since then, Wired for iPad has sold an average of 30,000 copies per month, or about 37% of the newsstand sales.
Popular Science’s iPad edition’s sales are said to be equivalent to 12% of its newsstand sales.
Lifestyle mags for the iPad are not faring anywhere near as well …
In comparison, lifestyle magazines like Glamour and Men’s Health are pulling in less than 1% of iPad sales when compared to their newsstand counterparts. People magazine for iPad is averaging 10,800 copies a week. However, the People app is unique in that it is free for print subscribers. Time Inc. declined to breakdown how many of its downloads were from print subscribers. Regardless, like Glamour and Men’s Health, iPad downloads only equal about 1% of People’s single-copy newsstand sales.
Ad Age also notes a few key factors to keep in mind when thinking about the market for iPad magazines – including the fact that it’s still in its infancy, and that publishers are still not able to offer subscriptions (though they’re hopefully hard at it negotiating with Apple to get these going). You have to imagine that once some reasonably priced subscription options are available (including those that cater for current online and print subscribers) sales should get a tremendous boost.
Another success factor mentioned is how much or how little new titles have embraced the notion of producing a proper iPad edition …
When looking at what magazine titles are succeeding on the iPad and what titles are faltering, we can’t help but draw some direct correlations between those titles that have invested the most in the technology and those that are simply just putting a glorified PDF in an iPad-app wrapper.
Amen to that! I have seen a number of hugely disappointing iPad magazine titles. Titles where it is blatantly obvious that have not paid any attention to what can be done in an iPad edition, and have done nothing to make their iPad version any different or better than a print version.
Here’s hoping that subscription models come to the App Store soon, and that those titles that put some real thought and effort into their iPad editions continue to succeed above others.