August 30, 2013 Last Updated 8:52 am

Random House Digital releases its first Newsstand app for Giada

The digital division of Random House has released its first Newsstand magazine app in support of one of its authors, Giada De Laurentiis. Giada: A Digital Weekly is a free weekly digital weekly magazine that not only promotes the cookbook authors’s books and apps, but pushes products such as make-up. The app looks to be a replacement for a previously released stand-alone app that is simply called Giada.

Giada-iPad-lgThe app was, it appears, built by Paragraph and is fairly simple in design, though it has some very nice and convenient features.

The app opens and immediately downloads any content in the background without the reader having to subscribe or search through a library or store page. The page layouts are in portrait-only, though the app does take advantage of landscape when you enter “cook mode”.

There is plenty of social media sharing and other common features, but there is surprisingly little multimedia – probably a choice made knowing that the digital magazine will be weekly.

While the first issue is free, a house ad inside the app makes clear that readers will have to subscribe to continue to keep getting the magazine. The cost will be $2.99 per month, though readers will be able to buy individual issues for 99 cents.

The digital magazine is all about commercialism and cult of personality. If Giada De Laurentiis is that imnportant to the reader maybe they will forgive pretty pushy attempts to separate you from your money.

As for the app, it is simplistic but effective. There are some rookie mistakes here, though. For instance, the links in the description are messed up –the link for the magazine’s website goes to the publisher’s website, while the link to the publisher’s website goes to the magazine.

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