Guest Entry by John Lambie, Founder Ideatron and App-o-matic

The iPad: Magazines Reinvented.

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Have you got one?
Planning on getting one?
I’d bet you’d find a few good first generation iPads for sale on eBay if you can’t afford the iPad2.

Heres’ a pretty good primer from AdAge on what tablet computing means for marketers:
http://adage.com/article/digital/ipad-s-slick-features-marketers/149172/

But you’re better off starting by thinking about what they mean for consumers — i.e. subscribers and readers.

A good way to start is to just think it’s like your favourite magazine — but with a little bit of magic hidden inside.

It’s the same size as a magazine, weighs the same as a magazine, and you can flip the pages like a magazine. It has gorgeous full colour resolution like a magazine — better, I opine, than you can get in CMYK.

And you can carry it from room to room like a magazine, settling into your favourite chair and thumbing through the pages. Once again, it has become a tactile experience. And don’t give me that bullshit about the smell of newsprint. Buy a bottle of printer’s ink and pour it into a vaporizer if it’s that important to you. =)

And here’s what it also doesn’t have, thank god:

  • • Ink on your fingers
  • • Free standing inserts
  • • Triple weight card inserts that make it impossible to lie flat
  • • A spine that ruins double page spreads
  • • Staples
  • • Half of the glorious forests of British columbia.
  • • Stories that mysteriously continue on page 513.
  • There’s heaps of great mags you can subscribe to — I get Vanity Fair, Esquire, National Geographic, Wired…

    Sadly, most advertisers don’t get it.
    And neither do the publishers.
    And 90% of the ads are flat graphics.
    They sit there and look pretty, just like the bad old days.

    The 10% that do have interactivity really pop. You can:

  • • Rotate a car in 360 degrees
  • • Watch a cocktail getting mixed
  • • Press a button for more info
  • • Play a little game
  • • View a video
  • • Listen to audio – even a sales pitch if you’re so inclined
  • • Or you can flick to the next page
  • The choice is yours.

    Sadly, few take advantage of the fact that iPads are also online — so, should the impulse take you, you can:

  • • Fill in an entry form
  • • Click through to a Web site for more
  • • Download an app
  • • Or even just tweet or share with your Facebook friends
  • • It’s a goldmine of undiscovered ideas.
  • Get an iPad, subscribe to your favourite zine and note the good, the bad and the ugly in this month’s issue.

    All the bads, all the uglies — and, sadly, most of the goods — still have a long way to go. Every same-as-last-century ad is a potential client screaming for someone with a digital brain to give their flat, boring, static ads an interactive makeover. Go forth and codify.