What makes the iPad a game changer is the combination experience. The brilliantly designed iPad, the controlled but safe App Store, the integration with iTunes and the optimised iOS operating system combine in such a way as to be infinitely better than the sum of its parts. Anyone who wants to really compete with Apple, and I hope someone does because competition is good for us, the consumers, will need to replicate not only the hardware but the ecosystem as well.
Aside from the iPad and the growing number of other tablets, and now colour ebook readers, the other technology that has enabled this present incarnation of DIMi is print on demand. Having edited many magazine titles over the years I can say that the old model of magazine sales and distribution is deeply flawed. This was mirrored recently in an editorial in SilverShotz magazine, a great photography title. Print on demand means that we no longer have to commit to, and pay for, a large print run, and then have to handle the shipping, warehousing and distribution of magazines. Our printing partner, MagCloud, a HP company, uses the latest digital press technology to print one magazine when someone orders it. Brilliant.
We have structured DIMi so that we can bring you a timely and beautiful publication on digital image making in all its forms and varieties, in the way that you want to consume it. At the start we are offering it in print and as an ebook. We are considering PDF distribution as well. We have priced the versions so that we earn the same small amount from each copy sold. The differences in price reflect the printing cost or the commission charged, that is all. So you pay differing amounts depending on how you choose to consume the title.
We have chosen to keep each volume smallish. This is deliberate. With print on demand, the cost of the magazine is a direct function of the number of pages. We would like our profiled photographers and artists to be able to use the print copy as a promotion tool for exhibitions, commercial promotion and career building and so wish to keep the per copy cost as low as possible. We would also rather produce smaller but more frequent volumes.
Given developments in iPad magazine subscriptions, we decided to bring DIMi out as an ebook rather than an iPad App, at least for now. The ebook means that we cover not only the iPad but also the new Kindle Fire, the other colour ebook readers, as well as people who read on their desktop or laptop.