Magazine company doubles staff, expands across platforms, pursues global
SYDNEY, Australia, June 21, 2012 /CNW/ - The tsunami of disruptive
technological change sweeping the publishing industry is an
opportunity, not a crisis, and magazines must reinvent themselves if
they are to not only survive, but thrive.
So argue the publishers of COSMOS, the celebrated science magazine, who
today launched an innovative iPad edition - the first of a series of
planned multi-platform products. The iPad edition is the result of nine
months of development and testing, and represents a complete
reconceptualization of the print magazine.
"It's not good enough to just produce a print replica on the iPad," said
Wilson da Silva, editor-in-chief of COSMOS. "You need to completely
re-imagine what a magazine is editorially, which is what we've done,
but also maintain a clear narrative structure throughout. The
functionality of the iPad is fundamentally changing the game, and only
those who capitalise on this will prosper.
"The media has been overly concerned with advertisers for too long. Now
that ad revenue is declining, many publishers are cutting back on
editorial resources - and that's a mistake. What the industry needs to
do is refocus on the fundamentals: their readers. At COSMOS, our
revenue has always come mostly from readers rather than advertisers.
Hence, we're excited about a world where creating engaging narrative
content that readers want, and are willing to pay for, is the name of
the game, because that's been what we've excelled at for years."
On the iPad, this means not just providing excellent content at lower
cost, but also the seamless integration of video and animation, live
updates, multiple layers of reader interaction and a cross-platform
approach to engaging audiences.
"If anything can save quality journalism, it will be the readers who are
willing to pay for excellence in writing, photography and design. And
those readers, who engage with magazines more than any other medium,
will attract the advertisers - which is the way it should be," said da
COSMOS, which celebrates its 7th birthday with the June 2012 issue,
specializes in long-form features and lush design. The winner of 45
journalism and publishing awards - including Magazine of the Year
awards twice in its native Australia - it has developed a strong
following around the world. Based in Sydney, its content is
nevertheless global in scope, attracting authors such as Richard
Dawkins, Margaret Wertheim, Steven Pinker, Paul Davies and Simon Singh.
Founded by scientists and media professionals who believe in the
transformative power of clear and engaging writing, it is now set to
take on the world with the launch of its iPad edition.
"What COSMOS has done on the iPad platform is both innovative and itself
disruptive," said Dr Alan Finkel, the Chancellor of Monash University
in Melbourne and the chairman and co-founder of Cosmos Media, the
"We've not only re-imagined COSMOS for the iPad, but will be boosting
frequency, creating bonus iPad issues, giving print subscribers free
access to the iPad editions, as well as free access to the complete
digital archive. I don't think any other publisher has so completely
overhauled its business model.
"COSMOS has done so because we've set our sights on the future. We're
preparing not just for the eventual demise of print, but looking to
take a dominant position in the emerging tablet market. We aim to be
the world's number 1 science magazine in five years," said Finkel.
The COSMOS Magazine app, launched today, runs on the powerful Oomph
digital publishing platform created by Mogeneration, a successful
Sydney-based developer of over 100 iOS and Android apps who worked
closely with the COSMOS team to push the boundaries of functionality.
"The iPad is changing the media industry in unpredictable ways - in our
case, for the better," said Kylie Ahern, CEO of Cosmos Media. "The App
Store is global, so the iPad edition of COSMOS - which has always been
global in outlook - can suddenly tap an international market. COSMOS
can compete with the world's leading science magazines on an equal
footing: at a compelling price and available as soon as it is
published, without the delays and cost of shipping and distribution
from Australia, which the print issue has had to face.
"That's why we've doubled our editorial staff in the past six months,
and have completely overhauled our business strategy. For us, print is
now just another platform. And we have a raft of new iPad, digital and
online products set to launch in the next 18 months," added Ahern.
The COSMOS Magazine app is free, and readers can also download a
complete issue free from the App Store. Individual copies of each
monthly edition can be purchased for US$4.99 each, and annual
subscriptions for US$24.99.
See a video demonstration of the COSMOS app here - http://www.cosmosmagazine.com/ipadtv1
iPAD EDITION BASICS
Frequency: 12 issues per year
Annual subscription, iPad-only: US$24.99
Single iPad-only issue: US$4.99
Annual subscription, Print + iPad + Browser + Archives: US$60
iPad app launch date: Thursday, 21 June 2012
Download the app free here:
BACKGROUND ON COSMOS MAGAZINE
COSMOS is Australia's #1 science media brand: the biggest-circulation
science magazine, highest rating science news site and its education
resources are used in 65% of high schools. Its publisher, Cosmos Media,
was founded by three people: Melbourne neuroscientist and entrepreneur
Dr Alan Finkel, magazine publishing executive Kylie Ahern and science
journalist Wilson da Silva. The company also produces a range of custom
editorial products such as websites, books, posters and DVDs . COSMOS
is the brainchild of da Silva, a past president of the World Federation
of Science Journalists and a former science reporter at Australia's ABC
TV. It is backed by an Editorial Advisory Board that includes Apollo 11
astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
SOURCE Cosmos Media Pty Ltd
For further information:
Call Arnold Perez at COSMOS on
+61 2 9310 8510 or
Also available is
Wilson da Silva on
+61 2 9310 8502,
Mobile +61 407 907 017 or