May 21, 2015 Last Updated 1:31 pm

Two Newsstand apps use the Adobe DPS to create very different, but equally effective new digital publications

First look: Berlin Policy Journal from the the German Council on Foreign Relations, and the first Newsstand app from the Inter-American Development Bank

The Apple Newsstand continues to attract interesting new digital publications even as finding them becomes harder and harder for readers. Because Apple is not maintaining the categories, the only way for a reader to browse the Newsstand in the same way a reader would browse a newsstand at, say, Barnes & Noble, is to wade through the hundreds of new foreign language apps being released in hopes of finding something new they can read.

One reason so many new publications appear is that more and more the Newsstand is being used by companies and institutions who are less interested in the general public reading their digital publications so much those they send direct links to. One assumes this may be the motivation behind two new international publications released recently.

BerelinPolicy-GreeceBerlin Policy Journal is an English language digital magazine published by the German Council on Foreign Relations. Using the Adobe DPS, the organization has created a simply designed digital magazine almost looks as if it had been produced by the TypeEngine or 29th Street Publishing platform.

This is becoming more common, as magazine designers begin to think iPhone-first, rather than iPad. It is hard to blame them, as iPhone sales continue to soar, while iPad sales are falling. But, and this is important to consider, sales of iPads are still pretty good, and if rumors of a new larger iPad are true, these designs may not work so well on a large display (in fact, one TNM readers is completely convinced that the decline in the Newsstand will reverse itself once a larger iPad is released – I’m not so sure).

The new Newsstand app for Berlin Policy Journal comes with a pilot issue and the new May issue. Single issues, according to the app description, are priced at € 5,99, with an annual subscription (six issues) costing € 24,99. But the new issue downloaded automatically for me, free of charge.

banco-1BID-INTAL Carta Mensual is published by Inter-American Development Bank to report on developments in the areas of integration and trade in Latin America and the Caribbean.

This is the 14th iPad app released by the bank, but the first to be launched into the Newsstand, and because the content is coming from a newsletter, it has been placed into the News category (as was the Berlin Policy Journal).

Here the publisher has taken a completely different approach. Instead of a universal app, one designed first for mobile, we have one designed for the iPad exclusively. Because of this, the designer has included page layouts for both portrait and landscape orientations.

There is even, as you can see here, an animated cover.

When commercial magazine publisher say they are thinking digital-first, they always mean the web. Corporations and institutions, though, are still seeing the mobile and tablet platforms as good places to launch digital publications. This is very much the reason several of the better digital publishing platforms have begun shifting their sales efforts away from magazine and newspaper publishers and more towards these organizations.

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