#marco arment

Marco Arment on iOS 7:

Apple has set fire to iOS. Everything’s in flux. Those with the least to lose have the most to gain, because this fall, hundreds of millions of people will start demanding apps for a platform with thousands of old, stale players and not many new, nimble alternatives. If you want to enter a category that’s crowded on iOS 6, and you’re one of the few that exclusively targets iOS 7, your app can look better, work better, and be faster and cheaper to develop than most competing apps.

This is exactly right.

Marco, on his site:

There’s room for another category between individuals and major publishers, and that’s where The Magazine sits. It’s a multi-author, truly modern digital magazine that can appeal to an audience bigger than a niche but smaller than the readership of The New York Times. This is what a modern magazine can be, not a 300 MB stack of static page images laid out manually by 100 people.

In my opinion, magazine publishers have wasted a golden opportunity put in front of them with the iPad. Nearly all of them have given us bloated ports of their print variety. They should have re-thought their products from the ground-up — use the same content, fine, but present it in the elegant and streamlined manner that the iPad allows for. Total fail.

I have a lot more faith in something like The Magazine to pull this off. And if it works, it could have some pretty far-reaching ramifications in the publishing world.

Great, honest post by Marco Arment from last week (just catching up on reading now in my post-SXSW haze). He’s reacting to the recent launch of Readability’s new app which is competitive with Arment’s own Instapaper

Writes Arment:

Reacting well to competition requires critical analysis of your own product and its shortcomings, and a complete, open-minded understanding of why people might choose your competitors.

How often do you see someone admit that they screwed up in the face of competition? Not often. It’s usually lame excuses or flat-out denial.

No product is perfect. And if you really can’t believe and/or admit when your competition does something better than you, you’re already on the road to failure.

Instapaper has been a staple of my daily routine for years now. Today brings version 4.0, which offers huge improvements both visually and in terms of functionality. I’ve been beta testing the app for a few weeks — it’s an excellent update. Creator Marco Arment talks about it in detail here.

The app is $4.99 (if you’re updating, it’s free) — well worth it — and comes with a new $2.99 subscription-based search option. Yes, you can finally search the content of each article you save, including the ones you archive. You also get access to search if you’re a subscriber (I’ve been a happily paying member for months). 

Love some of the innovative ways Marco is thinking about making money. Also, the new icon is a huge upgrade. Download it for that, stay for the awesome app.