Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A New iPhone App: "Exactly"

Apple yesterday accepted the digital editions App that we have been developing for some months. It is now has in the App Store. Exactly is the Free Exact Editions App, from which any title on the Exact Editions platform can be read on the iPhone.

Search for 'Exactly' in the iPhone App store and you will find it there, with this brief description:

Exactly brings magazines and books to the iPhone in their original full-colour format. Each page is delivered just as it appeared in the print edition, but with live links to web sites, phone numbers and more. Access free content from over 80 titles, or use your www.exacteditions.com subscription to read the latest issues on the day they're published.

  • Pinch or double tap pages to zoom.
  • Swipe pages left and right, or tap the page edges to flip to next/previous page
  • Use the animated thumbnail view to flick through the pages.
  • Tap any page links to web sites, email addresses, phone numbers or maps.
  • Tap contents-page links to jump to a particular article.
  • Network connection required.
Free, gratis, etc

More stuff will be added to the App in the coming months, and we expect to deliver Branded Apps through which magazines and books (maybe newspapers?) will be sold directly on subscription through the App store. This is an exciting new stage in the development of the Exact Editions reading platform. We think the iPhone has a lot going for it and we aim to make it work well with digital editions.

Maybe the coolest feature of the Exactly App is the way that it gives the user a new way of accessing a publication. 'Pageflow', similar to the 'coverflow' with which users can skim their CD covers on the iPhone. The 'pageflow' feature comes when the iPhone is twisted 90° anticlockwise.

Pageflow of the magazine Opera

When the iPhone swings back to the portrait mode the publication will be open at the page reached in skimming the pageflow. If you close the Exactly App and then open it a few hours or days later, it will open at the title that you last looked at, exactly at the page you had reached when last reading the magazine or book. I find this most helpful. The framework Apple have built for making these Apps is ingenious. I am sure that there will be lots more good stuff coming, from Apple and from the Exact development team.