Magazines and newspapers on the iPad would appear to be a perfect match for the device, but attempts such as Rupert Murdoch's The Daily and Sir Richard Branson's Project have met with limited success. There are many possible reasons for this, ranging from Apple's demands for 30 percent of all revenues from in-app purchases of subscriptions to the lack of a consistent user experience. The latter seems to be the biggest problem for many potential readers, since each magazine or newspaper seems to have its own unique method of navigating pages.
Gadget Daily News is claiming that Apple has an answer in the works: a magazine template for the Xcode development environment that will provide a consistent, manageable user experience. The template will not only provide a familiar look and feel between all magazines and newspapers that are developed using the code, but also make it simple to sell subscriptions and back issues from within the app.
According to Gadget Daily News, this should open up iPad publishing considerably, since people who wish to create and sell their own content need only get together with a developer to get their magazines or newspapers into the App Store in a short amount of time. The template could open up a huge new market for what blogger Anthony Morganti calls "Garage Magazines" -- self-published magazines that target a specific market. That's an apt moniker, considering that the company making this possible began its life in a garage.
The template is expected to arrive before the end of 2011. Let's just hope that self-titled magazines like the one shown in the illustration above don't become commonplace.