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Apple News

Apple Buys Texture, a 'Netflix For Magazines' App (ft.com) 43

Apple said on Monday it will acquire Texture, a digital magazine app, as the iPhone maker looks to fill the gap left by Facebook's pullback from news distribution. From a report: The deal is Apple's latest move to build out its content and services platform, coming just three months after it announced plans to acquire Shazam, the music recognition app, for around $400m. First launched in 2010, Texture has been described as "Netflix for magazines," as its $10-per-month subscription service provides unlimited access to more than 220 publications including People, the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, National Geographic and Vogue. Further reading: Recode.
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Apple Buys Texture, a 'Netflix For Magazines' App

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  • A magazine is large, meant to be viewed two pages at a time. How do you look at something like that on a cell phone? Seems like it would either be way too small, or require a lot of pinching and zooming around all over the place. Also seems like it wouldn't be a good way to view the ads, and magazines are all about ads.
    • A magazine is large, meant to be viewed two pages at a time. How do you look at something like that on a cell phone?

      It's almost as if it would be better to make a much larger device, some kind of digital pad, on which you could view larger pages or even two at once...

      Hmm, perhaps Apple should look into producing something like that to complement the magazine app.

      • by gnick ( 1211984 )

        It's almost as if it would be better to make a much larger device...

        Or maybe reformat the content. If we can solve that problem, soon we might see newspapers with their own websites.

        • It's almost as if it would be better to make a much larger device...

          Or maybe reformat the content. If we can solve that problem, soon we might see newspapers with their own websites.

          Texture does reformat many magazine articles for viewing on phones. They don't do it for all the mags they carry though probably because of licensing issues. They also have a topical "Highlights" area where articles are re-formatted for phones. There is also a search function to search through the current and back catalog for articles by keyword.

          Though reading long format articles on your phone is always a bit of pain in my opinion. But that is an issue of the delivery device: The phone. And I would not wan

    • I just read them for the articles.
  • by pr0t0 ( 216378 ) on Monday March 12, 2018 @12:19PM (#56247285)

    What is a "magazine"?

    The difference between a "digital magazine" and a web site is the ads are always full-page in the magazine.

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Monday March 12, 2018 @12:51PM (#56247445)

    An app by itself that just presents the world of magazines as we know it, is nice but not very useful. There are not that many magazines I actually want to read...

    Now what would be lots more interesting, is Apple really going the Netflix model - in addition to providing access to normal magazines, what if Apple spent even just a billion dollars on producing really out there magazines? Something no traditional publisher would produce because of risk, but Apple could back and present through the app as a hook, the same way Netflix has original series that are a draw to use the service and thus also see other content.

    Apple could even do things like short run magazines, that only had five-ten issues, or really interactive stuff since it's presented in an app. There are a lot of exciting possibilities there!

    • Apple could even do things like short run magazines, that only had five-ten issues, or really interactive stuff since it's presented in an app. There are a lot of exciting possibilities there!

      And they already have the Publishing and viewing Infrastructure there for rich, interactive content, with their largely unknown, but still excellent (and Free!), iBooks Author Application:

      https://www.apple.com/ibooks-a... [apple.com]

    • by barc0001 ( 173002 ) on Monday March 12, 2018 @01:27PM (#56247703)

      > An app by itself that just presents the world of magazines as we know it, is nice but not very useful

      You're making a pretty blanket statement based on your personal tastes. It may not be useful - to you - but many people would find it useful and more cost effective than buying magazines all the time. Also, have you actually looked at what's on offer for Texture, or are you just going by what you see at the supermarket as "the world of magazines"? I took a look a few minutes ago and was surprised to see there is a magazine devoted to beer, among other things.

      I'm not sure this would be for me, but if I did get a subscription I can easily see myself reading Popular Mechanics, Make:, This Old House, National Geographic and PC World, among others while I'm on the train commuting. Would be a damn sight better than reading the fragmented snippets of news and social media I currently make do with on that trip.

      • Also, have you actually looked at what's on offer for Texture

        I've used other magazine apps (and comic book apps) so I'm pretty familiar with what they can do, and what can be had. Although I've not subscribed to Texture I did look at the list of magazines and they are pretty standard fare (it's nice to see Make is still going).

        I took a look a few minutes ago and was surprised to see there is a magazine devoted to beer, among other things.

        I live in Denver, so I would assume there are several hundred magazin

  • They're going to buy Weeping Gorilla.

  • Focus on delivering completely integrated products is what made Apple what they are today.
    If they start playing around with things like buying a magazine app here or setting up a cloud thing there then before you know it they're Google and they have no idea who they are, where they're going, or what their product is and neither will their customers.
  • I'm genuinely curious how the magazine publishers find this profitable. $10/month is about the price of a single digital-only subscription to many of these magazines.

    If Texture is really providing the full content - the same as with a direct subscription - then I'm mystified. Why don't these publishers offer their subscriptions for $1/month or so? I'd snap up several of those in a flash. Why would they be satisfied with possibly substantially less delivered via a service like Texture?

    • > If Texture is really providing the full content - the same as with a direct subscription -
      > then I'm mystified. Why don't these publishers offer their subscriptions for
      > $1/month or so? I'd snap up several of those in a flash. Why would they be
      > satisfied with possibly substantially less delivered via a service like Texture?

      That $1/month/customer would be gross revenue, not net revenue. Try putting up the necessary web servers to handle thousands of paying customers browsing your site. Bandwid

      • Thanks for the clarification.

        Maybe I misunderstand how Texture works. It sounds like you're saying that they - not the magazine - are hosting the magazine's content. If so then I'm not sure I'd be perfectly happy with that as a subscriber (Will controversial articles be censored? Will there be typos or factual errors added?)

        I thought it was just a subscription that permitted access to the online magazines' existing websites. E.g., "The New Yorker" magazine has its own website for digital subscribers and

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