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Digital Publishing Software for Mobile Devices on the Upswing in 2014

In January the FIPP published a 444-page report, World Magazine Trends 2013/14. The survey found that print editions of newspapers and magazines would continue to shrink at an average rate of 2%-3% a year, while revenue from digital editions had seen considerable growth, from about $8.2 billion in 2012 to an expected $15.2 billion in 2015.

The digital trend is clearly here to stay as we near the 4 year anniversary of the iPad and people continue to rely more and more on their mobile devices for both news and entertainment. But this isn’t just about being a digital presence, it’s also about catering to what mobile users have come to know and expect from touchscreen, app-based content.

Publishers are investigating new ways to reach readers, abandoning the old print imperative of monthly issues. New digital editions of magazines are experimenting with smaller editions designed for mobility: daily issues with short articles to be read on the morning train commute, weekend releases with longer pieces that can be read at a more leisurely pace.

Readers are consuming information differently as well, and it’s up to digital publishing to meet those needs. Smart bookmarking and social media sharing enables readers to save their favorites easily and then share them readily. This becomes not only a tool for the reader to enjoy, but a cost-effective means of advertising for the publication as well as articles are shared throughout the online world.

One interesting development exemplifying this trend is in-flight magazines going digital. With the FAA lifting the ban on device usage, more airlines are able to promote in-flight publications before, during, and after flights, allowing users to interact with the magazine in a manner not possible with print editions. This is especially relevant in the increasingly social media age of information sharing.

It is clear that digital publishing software, especially for the mobile market, has become a necessity for publications wishing to stay competitive in the 21st century. With print editions of magazines getting more and more bad press for their overall decline, the World Magazine Trends 2013/14 is certainly correct when it says the “digital interfaces (mobile, tablets, Internet) were expected to lift the industry from the doldrums.”

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