Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Tablets: Here They Come to Save the Day

....for magazine publishers.

A skeptic, Jeff Bercovici, begs to differ.

Link to January 5 The New York Observer post, "Tablets from Above".

Excerpt: If you ever hear about a company whose new technology is going to save magazines from extinction … short it. You’ll make a killing.

Step back in time. The old list of possible solutions to the magazine industry’s existential crisis is a long one: a perfect electronic replica of ink-and-paper editions, in PDF format; Web sites loaded with social networking features and user-generated content; mobile phone editions; flexible e-paper; print-on-demand copies and on and on it goes.

Cumulative net difference made by all of the above to the survival prospects of magazines: zero.

But now there’s a new savior on the horizon, and, hoo boy, this one is really going to change everything. The deus ex machina du jour involves notepad-size wireless computers with full-color, touch-screen displays. Publishers are tripping over themselves in their haste to be ready when the first of these devices hits the market later this year.

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