The Huffington Post updates its digital magazine Newsstand app
Weekly digital magazine gets a refreshed look and remains free of charge for readers after initially launching back in June of 2012 as a paid publication
The Huffington Post today issued an update to its digital magazine app, introducing what it calls a “fresh new design” to the weekly digital publication.
The app uses the Joomag digital publishing platform – a platform, to be honest, I almost never see used by digital magazine publishers. One reason may be that the Sunnyvale company maintains a website without any direct contacts, instead one is forced to fill out on of those contact forms. It is probably because of this that Joomag was not included in either the first edition of the Guide to Digital Publishing Platforms that appeared in 2013 inside the Tablet Publishing single issue magazine, or the second edition that appeared as an interactive eBook inide the iBooks Store last year.
Huffington appears in the Newsstand under the developer account name of HuffingtonPost.com and is one of three iPad apps to be found inside the Apple App Store. The other two, stand-alone apps, are The Huffington Post, which is an app that reformats the website into a native tablet (and iPhone) edition, and HuffPost Live which is a live streaming video app.
The digital magazine app is now on version 3.0. The version 2.0.3 update made the app universal, and the digital magazine is definitely designed in such a way to make reading on both the iPhone and iPad mini easy and enjoyable. The look is similar to what one sees in a TypeEngine or 29th Street Publishing app (both those platforms are inside the Guide, if you want to learn more).
Originally annoucned in April of 2012, it eventually launched in June of 2012. At launch single issues cost $0.99, and subscriptions were either $1.99 a month or $19.99 a year. But within two months the publisher had decided to go free.
“In the end, we felt that asking people to pay for the magazine was inconsistent with The Huffington Post itself, which has never charged for content,” a spokesperson told Mashable in early August of 2012. “As with everything we do at HuffPost, we launch and then iterate. This was an iteration on that basis.”
By 2013 there were already those who were questioning the whole project as few ads were appearing inside the digital magazine.
“We are more committed than ever to Huffington,” Rhoades Alderson, HuffPost’s senior director, communications told Adweek in May of 2013. “It’s still an infant, but we’re way ahead on our year-one strategy to establish the brand and a core audience.”
The Huffington Post was not the only web property to be attracted to the idea of launching a digital magazine into the Apple Newsstand, but Huffington is one of the very few to have survived into 2015.