wired-tablet As Paul just said, Wired’s Chris Anderson has proudly reported that the iPad edition of Wired Magazine has gone on-line at last, and the version for other tablets is coming soon. This is the actual print magazine Wired, not the Wired News site that contains original stories and reprints from the magazine.

The magazine was affected by Apple’s 11th-hour ban on third-party development environments. Instead of creating one version for all platforms, Adobe had to create a separate Objective-C-based version of the magazine to meet Apple’s requirements.

While I haven’t bought it myself—I’m saving my money for my ConQuesT trip this weekend—I’ll admit to being a trifle underwhelmed by the price no matter how “enhanced” the magazine might be. Like most other iPad magazines, the Wired app costs $4.99 per issue—whereas a year’s subscription to the print magazine would only cost about $10. However, Wired is planning to make some kind of subscription bundling deal available according to this review by Advertising Age.

John Herrman at Gizmodo also has a similarly underwhelmed review of the app. He says that it is probably the best magazine app developed for the iPad yet—but that really isn’t saying much. The Wired app still suffers from considerable drawbacks: the $5 price point, the 500-megabyte size, the lack of copying, pasting, or sharing, and so on.

As Mike Masnick has said over on Techdirt, there’s really nothing wrong with the web form factor for magazine delivery, and most magazine apps serve to take away flexibility rather than adding it. It remains to be seen, however, whether consumers will agree.


  1. I won’t waste a nanosecond of time trying Wired’s “tired” app as it now exists. Half a gig? And $5 an issue? What contempt for end users! I wonder what Chris Anderson would write if he didn’t have to consider the career risks. Thanks for the warning, Chris M! David

  2. Nagging about the 500MB is just ridiculous. As seen in the Woodwing iPad Tools there is an option to have the video be placed online (thus streaming inside the digital magazine when selected) or to have them included in the digital magazine. The last option allows you to have the full media experience even when offline. Oh, and for the record… Wifi is not everywhere yet, so that ‘offline’ option is a good thing. Since when do we nag about a measly 500MB download? What’s the size of a popular highres video podcast episode?

    As for the flexibility, yes, there is a point to that, but this is the very first version. It’s like the iPhone 1st gen. Lots of room for improvement, but a bright future ahead.

  3. Frank, I appreciated the information. But, yes, at least here in the States, a 500MB download isn’t a casual matter for many users, especially when some cable companies want to charge more when you go past caps. And what about the 3G-related limits for econo-users?

    If nothing else, I’m curious if, during the installation of the Wired app, the user himself/herself can select the “remain online option.” What would be the size minus the videos?

    I remain skeptical about the $5-an-issue price as well.

    I’ll wish Wired lots and lots of luck, of course, and hope it can address the above concerns.


  4. Wow. I didn’t realize how ridiculously cheap a Wired subscription is in the US.

    I only got the magazine a couple of times at the newsstand in Switzerland where one issue costs about 10$.

    Also if you order international the price is 70$ for 12 issues, well above what the iPad version costs.

    Plus I actually prefer the digital version.

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