Wired Magazine’s iPad edition goes live for $4.99 per issue

invisibleSHIELD case for iPadChris Anderson, Wired Magazine’s Editor in Chief reports:

The irony that Wired, a magazine founded to chronicle the digital revolution, has traditionally come to you each month on the smooshed atoms of dead trees is not lost on us. Let’s just say the medium is not always the message.

Except that now it is. I’m delighted to announce that Wired’s first digital edition is now available for the iPad (US$4.99 per issue) and soon for nearly all other tablets. We have always made our stories accessible online at Wired.com, but as successful as the site is, it is not a magazine.

The tablet is our opportunity to make the Wired we always dreamed of. It has all the visual impact of paper, enhanced by interactive elements like video and animated infographics. We can offer you a history of Mars landings that lets you explore the red planet yourself. We can take you inside Trent Reznor’s recording studio and let you listen to snippets of his work in progress. And we can show you exactly how Pixar crafted each frame of its new movie, Toy Story 3.

To deliver this rich reading environment, we’re using new digital publishing technology developed by Adobe. The yearlong effort, spearheaded by Wired creative director Scott Dadich, will allow us to simultaneously create both the print magazine and the enhanced digital version with the same set of authoring and design tools.

The arrival of the tablet represents a grand experiment in the future of media. Over the next few months, we’ll integrate social media and offer a variety of versions and ways to subscribe in digital form. We’ll learn through experimentation, and we will watch closely as our readers teach us how they want to use tablets.

There is no finish line. <Wired magazine will be digital from now on, designed from the start as a compelling interactive experience, in parallel with our print edition. Wired is finally, well, wired.

Source: Wired Magazine

MacDailyNews Take: $4.99 per issue is simply too much, but it is nice to see that even though Wired made the absolutely wrong choice of publishing partners (Adobe), they still figured out a way to eventually produce approved App Store content. Mr. Anderson: Please let us know how well you sell on iPad for $4.99 per issue and, especially, on those “nearly all other tablets” of which you speak. (smirk)


  1. What is this new “new digital publishing technology developed by Adobe”?

    I don’t think I’ve heard of any kind of new publishing engine from Adobe.

  2. Something about this announcement seems to describe exactly the situation that SJ will declare to be a violation of the developer’s license. Is Wired big enough to tell Jobs to pound sand we’re using Adobe flash anyway???

  3. @bob,

    It can’t be Flash, if it’s an approved app in the App Store.

    But I think i”ll pass – NO online mag is worth $5. Charge me $1.99 for the app and $.99 for each issue and I’m sold. Otherwise, go pound sand yourself!

  4. Since Wired is not printing on, nor distributing “smooshed atoms of dead trees”, then why is the digital edition the same price as the newsstand edition, $5?!

    Get a clue Wired, you’re not that special.. Sheesh!


  5. Would love to subscribe, but not at $5 per issue. And where is MacLife and MacWorld? Of course, if every publisher tries to sell e-mags at premium prices, this revolution will be slow, at best, and short-lived at worst. (FYI, I did subscribe to an audiophile magazine at a decent price via Zinio on my iPad.)

  6. The prices of magazines delivered electronically should be less than their paper counterparts. They have neither the materials nor the delivery charges to contend with, so why are these guys so greedy? They almost make the music industry look like saints…

  7. The first issue probably cost them a cool million to produce. Everyone at the joint weighted in, a thousand “can’t we do this?” requests. After the fervor dies down, they’ll streamline, and lower the cost to $1.50.

    Or they’ll wither.

  8. I can’t imagine how any online magazine can expect people to pay $5 per issue. Completely ridiculous! I hope MDN will keep us updated how well Wired, Time, etc sell at these prices.

  9. I travel once or twice a month and often buy magazines at the airport. I usually pay anywhere from $4-7 per issue when I purchase this way. For occasional reading, I have absolutely zero problem with them charging $4.99 per issue. If you want it free, go to Safari and like they said, you won’t get as “rich” of an experience. For everyone who thinks this is too much… great, don’t buy.

    However… if you want to get long term readers, then you MUST offer a subscription package, with a lower price per issue. I haven’t checked out their digital edition yet, but if it has advertisements (like the print edition), then you will absolutely need to get readership numbers up in order to sell ads. Subscriptions at a cheaper rate will be the only way to do this.

  10. Pricing: Not unlike the recording and film industries, which have had inflated prices for ages, the publishing industry is aiming HIGH in price in the hopes that people will accept and pay it.

    Meanwhile, I get full color e- editions of Smart Computing and MacWorld for about $18 per year. That’s $1.50 per issue.

    So no Wired, $5.00 per issue is NOT going to fly. Nice try.

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