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Wired iPad App

Yesterday I tried the first Wired magazine app on my iPad. It was a brilliant reading experience that offers a promise of what magazines could morph into. When I handed the iPad to a friend he immediately had that characteristic grin that accompanies the sensation of a new experience.  It may or may not represent the definitive future of the magazine format, but I wanted to find out what others had thought. A quick look online revealed that the app’s first day was immensely successful with around 24,000 downloads. However, there was also a strong wave of opposition, mainly centered around the resemblance of the app to the multimedia cd-roms of the 90s. Who cares!? If it is a joy to use, feels good to read, and satisfies any number of people, then it is a positive outcome. Digital natives may not care that the
app generates a tactile feel similar to a print magazine, but then again they may enjoy it because of the interface and the richness of the content. Then again they may reject it as cumbersome when compared to a quick in and out of a googled wired article on the web. Irrelevant. What matters is that the experiments have begun. Editors and journalists are all toying with new forms and styles and technologies in the search for that elusive successful digital transition rather than just bemoaning the decline of their print business.

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Categories: content, Technology Tags: , ,
  1. Mo Youssouf
    May 31, 2010 at 11:46 am

    Hi Karim,

    For the past eight years, I have been trying to convince investors to start up an online tv channel. Everyone thought I was crazy. Including my friends, which makes you want to get new friends, but then who has the time!! Anyway, a few days ago, I read about GoogleTV. I mean if this doesn’t change the whole scope of broadcasting, what will?

    These guys have tied up with Sony, Intel and Logitech. This is the “cover all ends” approach. Users will be able to browse the web on their TV set, search for TV content available on internet sources as well as searching broadcast channels. Digital Production mentioned the service will be integrated into an upcoming range of Sony flat panel TVs and will also be available via a set top box manufactured by Logitech, which is also developing a number of remote controls, devices and smartphone application to interact with the TV. This will happen sooner than later as we’re already seeing 3D tv sets being sold in the UAE today.

    Basically, much like the iPad applications changing the print industry, GoogleTV will do the same for the broadcast industry. It’s in the set top box and in the TV set you buy. Eventually other TV manufacturers will follow suit. What this means for the broadcast industry is you no longer need people meters (you will have one global monitor), you no longer compete domestically or regionally (there will be no more territories), and you will definitely not need satellites to reach a home on another continent. AbuDhabi will compete with NBC who will compete with Channel4, Rai, TV5, ABC, and all channels in between simultaneously. A true global marketplace. Can you imagine? Arab channels will be able to reach Arabs all over the world. However, Arab channels will be unable to broadcast English language content because they can’t compete with the makers of said content who are also available on the same platform. The good news is all the money spent on acquiring non-Arabic language content can be used to create high-quality and original Arabic-language content.

    In the near future, if you shift your resources online you will beat the competition. You can broadcast online to the world. If everyone is to have a Sony or a JVC or a Toshiba television set with GoogleTV, then they can search online, watch online and stay online for as long as they want and for a fraction of what they pay for cable or satellite television. Of course Google is being diplomatic and is not saying they’re out to control what we watch, only how we watch.
    And so you no longer need satellites to beam into homes, rather you will need servers. Reality shows will change and look like the film “Gamer” where viewers can instruct participants on what to do in real time. Your fixed costs become significantly lower. Your transmission team is one guy. You’ll have no up-link fees. What do you do with the excess cash?

    The only constant is content. The question becomes what type of content will you create for the world and how? Reality? Drama? Comedy? A new genre? A mix?

    I’m still working on the answer. Meanwhile, my friends have come to the conclusion that I, in fact, am not crazy but bordering on…genius!! And while now investors think it would be a great idea….they’re all broke 🙂

    All the best

    Mo

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