Just watched this video about the future of magazines via e-readers. Nothing mentioned about newspapers (who need a new metaphor for presentation of content more than do magazines which have evolved over time).
The video really showcases an elegant interface, but it’s still a very 1 way mechanism- with no discussion of feedback, learning about the user, or delivering custom ad feeds, very much a designers solution as opposed to an advertising based/business model based solution:
The concept aims to capture the essence of magazine reading, which people have been enjoying for decades: an engaging and unique reading experience in which high-quality writing and stunning imagery build up immersive stories.
The concept uses the power of digital media to create a rich and meaningful experience, while maintaining the relaxed and curated features of printed magazines. It has been designed for a world in which interactivity, abundant information and unlimited options could be perceived as intrusive and overwhelming.
The real value is being able to deliver custom ads, with feedback to advertisers- do you like this ad, this product, do you want to learn more, or you want to buy? Will the content be a pure cash buy for the user, or will advertising still support it? And best of all, we’ll finally know who is reading the ads.
Remember, without the need to print- and distribute, the costs for content producers drop considerably. However, the cost of getting readers willing to pay- that’s another matter. While we may solve the hardware issue, solving the content value equation- and the amount of intrusion of advertising is a much bigger problem.
What will be most critical is a single publishing standard- so that one e-reader can read any content and advertisers can reach all readers based on your personal preferences. The only other remaining challenge is getting enough of these readers out all at once. It will have to be fast for publishers to transition smoothly. With magazines and newspapers dropping like flies, maybe it’s time for a national e-reader initiative as part of a green tech movement. Every newspaper, every magazine, should consider ending printed publications by banding together and delivering an e-reader as part of the subscription cost.
The faster we move to digital print, the faster we move to better, more trackable advertising.