updated 03:00 pm EDT, Wed June 30, 2010
Wired refines tablet magazine formula
Wired magazine revamped its approach to tablet magazines today with its second, July issue for the iPad (free, App Store). The new version drops the single-issue download approach and adopts the more common in-app strategy; readers can get both future and past issues from the same app. Prospective buyers also no longer have to commit to the full magazine to see how it works, as a smaller 50MB preview is available with the download.
New features have found their way into the magazine itself, such as 360 degree panoramas and an in-app browser for web content. Common complaints about large file sizes have been partly addressed by cutting the size down to a more practical 337MB.
The new issue drops by a dollar to $4. Representatives from the magazine explained the cut as part of an "R&D phase" where it's still trying to gauge business models. Critics have pointed out that the initial $5 price made it six times more expensive to read the iPad edition than the $10 it costs for a one-year subscription to the paper version.
Although only available so far for the iPad, Wired's early magazines are considered prototypes for wider tablet releases that could include Android and competing platforms.