Digital Publishing Magazines for the iPad

Writing about the new Digital Publishing Suite has been keeping me so busy that I haven’t been updating this blog with juicy InDesign tips. If you’re interested in creating books or magazines for the iPad or other devices, go to the Adobe Labs site. You can download the necessary tools, as well as the user guide and the tutorial assets. To see what kinds of questions people are asking, go to the user forum.

If you’re interested in submitting an app you create to the Apple Store, you’ll want to join the prerelease site. Go to the Adobe prerelease page and choose Digital Magazine Publishing for product. The tools on the prerelease site are updated more frequently than on the Labs site. Also, the prerelease Downloads site includes a document called “iPad Publishing Process Overview.pdf” that helps you get started with the submission process.

If you have an iPad, check out some of these apps that were created using early versions of the Digital Publishing Suite tools.

InDesign Magazine Viewer (Free)

Mobile touch devices can provide a reading experience that’s better in some ways than websites or printed magazines. But the apps have to be done correctly. The “Take Color for a Spin” article in this issue takes advantage of this new format. Unfortunately, some of the other articles use a basic, flat structure when slideshows, videos, and other interactive designs would have improved the viewing experience. Then again, it’s free. Let’s hope future versions of this great magazine take better advantage of the format. (Download in iTunes)

Martha Stewart Living – Boundless Beauty ($3.99)

Martha made a guest appearance at the Adobe Max conference, and an Adobe bigwig named Kevin Lynch just returned the favor and entered Martha’s kitchen.

I bought this issue, but I haven’t been able to critique it yet because my wife has taken possession of my iPad. I may have more to say if I can get my iPad back. (Download in iTunes)

WIRED (Free Viewer with preview issue; $3.99 per retail issue)

WIRED was the first magazine to use our tools to build an iPad app. There are six issues you can buy, including the newest one with a racy cover, “100% Natural.” In all their issues, they create amazing effects. My favorite article shows 360 panoramas from within various cockpits, allowing you to zoom in on controls. After viewing that article, I firmly believe that I learned enough to fly a small plane. Don’t try to tell me otherwise. (Download in iTunes)

DI Magazine (Free)

Cool app for photographers. Here’s the description: “DI magazine is the new interactive publication for all Photoshop, Photoshop Elements and Lightroom users. Built from the ground up specifically for the iPad, the magazine provides essential step-by-step techniques, not-to-be-missed insights into the inner workings of your editing software and inspirational folios and is designed for image makers of all skill levels and interests . . . And for a limited time, your first issue is free.” So grab it now. (Download in iTunes)

Wandern (Free)

German travel magazine. The photos and slideshows are amazing, but I couldn’t understand a word of it. (Download in iTunes)

Sabado Bicentario (Free)

This is an application from Chile based on the print edition of Sabado magazine. This magazine has great interactive effects, but the type is a little too small to read comfortably on the iPad. (Download in iTunes)

iGizmo (Free)

Here, I’ll let iTunes explain it: “Download iGIZMO to get the latest in gadgets and consumer tech direct to your iPad. It’s like a magazine, website and TV show wrapped up in one, with HD video reviews and features, unbiased verdicts on all the latest kit, plus amazing 360-degree product shots and bags of interactivity. It’s your one stop shop for the tech that matters.” (Download in iTunes)

The New Yorker (Free viewer with preview issue; $4.99 per retail issue)

Last but not least, this one is my personal favorite. The free viewer has a quirky video from Jason Schwartzman (Bored to Death, Rushmore) that describes how to use the New Yorker app on the iPad. I love viewing this magazine on my iPad. (Download in iTunes)

For additional apps created using the DMP tools, see the Digital Publishing Gallery.

11 Responses to Digital Publishing Magazines for the iPad

  1. Terri Stone says:

    Thanks for including the InDesign Magazine viewer in this roundup, Bob. It may interest your readers to know that we put together the app with a two-person design studio and no budget. I don’t think Wired or Martha Stewart Living can say the same!

    • Bob Bringhurst says:

      Thanks for mentioning that, Terri. You were also dealing with buggy software and a convoluted submission process that took time away. As the tools and processes are simplified, people will be able to spend more time on design. Again, I love InDesign Magazine. I hope to see more iPad issues–with slideshows!

      • Terri Stone says:

        You got it. 😉

        I wonder, though… Did you miss that the first issue does have videos (see the InDesign CS5 article, for example); multi-state objects as interactive buttons and pop-up images; a “slideshow” image pan (the InDesigner article); and multiple orientations?

        We realized after publishing the first issue that many people overlooked these aspects of the app, so put together an explanatory movie. It’s at

  2. Hi. I can’t seem to find the “iPad Publishing Process Overview.pdf” you mention. Even a search in Adobe doesn’t come up with matching results. Could it be they took down the pdf?
    I’ve also got a question: once I have mi single-folio app created, do I need the Adobe monthly/yearly service to have my app published on the App Stores, or can I do the submission? Thanks and regards.

    • Bob Bringhurst says:

      It’s in the Downloads section of the DPS prerelease site. Look in Downloads > Drop 12.

  3. marcia Sohl says:

    My desktop…which suddenly has become excessively large … 16″ in either direction. Normally to get the other menu…side menu with cursor which allows defining box and writing, arrows, etc. has disappeared. All I ever had to do before what to click on the doc and that menu would open. HELP…I’ll pay you …just send a bill

  4. Jacob Singer says:

    Thank you for all your ideas. However, how doe I get to publish an iBook in ePub format to iTunes? What prgram do I use, or where do I find it in iTunes.

    • Bob Bringhurst says:

      Use InDesign to create a document and export it as an EPUB file. Drag the EPUB file into your iTunes library, and it will show up in the iBooks app. If you want others to view it, submit it to Apple. You’ll want to look at InDesign help for more info on creating EPUB files.

  5. Juan Carlos says:

    Hi Bob, Is there a way to create writing fields on DPS, we have a few custumers that need to have their readers input text on the publication.