by Staff Writer
August 24, 2010
OverviewFor those of you who can't get enough celebrity news, you can now have all the People magazine goodness on your iPad. The iPad version of People isn't simply the print magazine gone digital, but actually adds new aspects. There are iPad exclusive sections, features, and photos & videos not included in the print magazine plus everything that is, but without the paper.
FeaturesEach issue currently costs $3.99 which is the same as the newsstand price, but there isn't an option to subscribe to the iPad version. If you have a print subscription you can get the iPad version for free simply by registering e code on your magazine. The app features a number of streamlined services to get you to the articles you want as quickly as possible.
The GoodAs soon as you launch People magazine on your iPad you may never want to read the print version again. Right on the cover you can tap any of the stories, and be taken right to them rather than flipping through the pages for the right page number. You can move on to the contents page, and again have one tap access to any story listed. If, instead you choose to scroll through the magazine page by page, it's a breeze either dragging or tapping the hot zone on the right side of the page. As you scroll through you'll find all the things you love about People magazine as well as brand new features. There are numerous pages that have interactive features from bonus photo galleries to tapping on five different items on page with each one bringing up the description on tap. There are many methods that allow for more content on a single page that isn't possible in the print version. You can even see much larger photos, and then tap to bring up the description so you can see the whole photo at once, and then read about it rather than both being combined like in the print version. There are tons of photos packed in with so many additional photo galleries per section that it's like night and day compared to the print version. Photos are great, but one thing print definitely can't do is have embedded videos which are present in the iPad version. Just in this issue you get an interview withJulia Roberts about Eat, Prey, Love, a behind the scenes look at Project Runway with Heidi Klum, and a fashion interview wit Katy Perry. There are more videos included, for example just showing you a look at stars cribs and baby rooms that pictures can't do the full justice to. Also included are embedded trailers for the movie reviews as well as preview songs for the music reviews both from Apple. There is extra web content as well that can be accessed without leaving the app. Even the ads are interactive with every single one having some interactive feature. Navigating around is as smooth as can be with a well done UI that brings you a page viewer scroller at the bottom and a drop down content viewer at the top.
The BadIt would be great to be able to just subscribe to the iPad version at a similar discount rate as you can subscribe to the print version. Buying the full price issue every week can get expensive, and after reading the iPad version you won't want the print version as well. It's not up to People magazine though as it's an Apple restriction which will hopefully be changed soon. Beyond the price, and actually using the app there are a few problems. Some of the interactive features have very specific points to tap for them to work, and some of the load times are a bit long. You can tap on something, and there is no indication if the app recognized it your action or not so you don't know if it's loading or not. There are many things that require multiple taps to get working or a little more patience for it to start working. It would be nice to see a little spinning circle when the video is loading as sometimes it just doesn't recognize your tap properly, and your waiting for it to do nothing. It would also be nice to pinch and zoom the pages especially if you’re in landscape rather than portrait as parts can be cut off a little. One little thing that I found odd was that movies and music connect to Apple, but books connect to Amazon even though you can only read this version on the iPad. You would think iPad owners would want it to connect to iBooks, just a thought.
The VerdictPeople Magazine is a well done iPad version of the print magazine that will have you wanting to read People exclusively on the iPad. With all of the interactive features, streamlined interface, and plenty of bonus content you'll never want to read the print version again. It really is a whole new way to enjoy People magazine, though there are a few bugs they can work out. People magazine is a great iPad app, and absolutely amazing if you already subscribe to the print version. $3.99 a week just doesn't seem worth it when you see the price you can get a print subscription for. Hopefully you can get an iPad subscription deal in the near future.
Condé Nast Digital