After a rather quiet year, it has been announced that the Hollywood heartthrob, Robert Pattinson, will be reviving his magazine for the iPad. With publishing houses folding left and right, the fact that a luxury brand such as Vogue may be releasing an iPad edition is a hopeful sign for the future of print. We take a look at the redesign of one of the most renowned men’s magazines, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of an e-publication.
A Brief History Of Vogue
To coincide with the release of the luxury iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, Apple and Vogue have announced that they will be re-launching Vogue for iPhone. The original Vogue for iPhone came out in 2012 and was available for only £3.49 ($5.19). Since then, it has been a best seller, with over a million copies sold worldwide.
The relaunch is set for next month and will mark the first time that Vogue has been available on iPhone since its original release. It will also be Vogue’s first iPad edition. In the meantime, those who already have a subscription to Vogue can sign up to receive a free trial of the new app. Vogue for iPhone will cost £5.99 ($8.19) on release.
Why An iPad Edition For A Luxury Brand?
This year, luxury brands have seen an upturn in interest as consumers have turned towards cheaper alternatives. The likes of Tiffany and Burberry have seen share prices fall, while those of Gucci and Hermes have appreciated. It would appear that the desire for luxury has not evaporated but has taken a backseat to prioritising affordability. This makes perfect sense for brands, seeing as the more affluent the customer, the more valuable they are as a potential purchaser.
There is also the added convenience of an iPad edition. Thanks to tablets and e-readers, customers can now access content on the move and, given the choice, would probably choose to do so rather than purchasing a print copy. In addition to this, those who do read print copies often prefer to do so on a big screen, be that mobile or a tablet. The luxury industry is still very much geared toward the printed word and those who have a love for letterpress and shiny ink on paper.
The Advantage Of An Online Publication
Although we have spoken about the convenience of an online edition, it is important to recognise the advantages that come with a digital publication. Subscription levels can be managed effortlessly and all copies can be kept in digital libraries rather than rotting away in dusty shoeboxes. The cost of printing and shipping magazines is also significantly reduced. Overall, it is easier to collaborate with authors and contributors thanks to the digital format. Finally, with the world shifting to a digital sphere, the need for a print publication such as Vogue is no longer required.
The Disadvantages Of An Online Publication
Of course, there are disadvantages to an online publishing model. Chief among them is the issue of content discovery. When it comes to luxury goods, the last thing anyone wants is to be force-fed with content that they already know. This is why established luxury brands regularly court controversy by creating limited-edition runs of iconic items or opening exclusive retail stores in major cities. Discovering new brands and luxury items is undoubtedly harder when everything is online. This is more of a disadvantage for users in emerging markets where digital literacy is lesser. In addition to this, many still see print as a more secure and long-lasting format than an e-publication. The latter can be easily erased or corrupted.
Revising Vogue Magazine For iPad
Annabel Karmaleek, the creative director of Future Inc, the agency behind Vogue for iPhone, had this to say: “It has always been our goal to bring the elegance, extravagance and luxury of Vogue to iPhone. We are excited to now be able to do this and to bring a whole new dimension of beauty and lifestyle content to users around the world. The beauty industry is evolving and changing with the times, and Vogue is proud to lead the way on iOS devices.”
An Iconic Look
There is no question that Vogue is a prestigious brand and it would be an understatement to say that the design team had their work cut out for them. The magazine has been through three major redesigns since its inception and each time, the team has paid homage to the golden era of men’s fashion in the 1950s and 1960s. One of the main focuses of the new edition is the overall look of the magazine and the type of content that is included. In line with Vogue’s prestigious past, the design of the new edition draws upon iconic fashion houses such as Dior, Givenchy and Yves Saint Laurent. The result is a look that is reminiscent of vintage fashion magazines from the era. This is not to say that everything is old school all of a sudden, but the emphasis seems to be on the overall look and feel of the publication rather than the content itself. The type of content will include not only high-end fashion but also beauty, lifestyle and cultural features. In addition to this, those who have a penchant for cars will be able to look for the latest automobilistic marvels and find detailed information about each model.
Keeping It Light
Another key design consideration is keeping the overall look of the magazine as light and airy as possible. As we have seen with the iPad edition of Vogue, the luxury industry is experimenting with different forms of content including GIFs, memes and even interactive mini-games. The idea is to attract as many individuals and fanbases as possible rather than just a select audience, especially in emerging markets where people may not yet be accustomed to digital publishing. Keeping the design minimal also helps with this and allows the content to pop out at the reader. Overall, the look and feel of the iPad edition of Vogue is a triumph and it seems that luxury brands are fully committed to reviving defunct titles for the medium. In addition to this, there is also the re-launch of Marc Jacobs’ fashion house’s much anticipated quarterly magazine. This does not mean that print is dead yet but it certainly seems to be on the wane. As always, time will tell but for now, luxury brands will continue to put print to the test and see how they can make the most of emerging markets in order to boost their sales.