Major Publishing Consortium Ready to Launch "Hulu for Magazines"

It's been two years since Next Issue Media was first announced but the subscription-swapping, all-you-can-read digital news-stand is set to launch tomorrow.

Next Issue Media is a digitial subscription service proposed by five of the world's largest publishers (Conde Nast, Time Inc, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp). Users would receive as many digital magazines as they wish for a flat monthly rate of $10-15, depending on if you want delivery of weeklies like The New Yorker. And just like Hulu, the user will be able to freely pick and choose which content to consume.

The digital magazines will still read like physical magazines—top to bottom, left to right, including ads—which is kind of odd but likely a necessary intermediary step for publishers to make that cognitive leap to accepting digital publishing. At launch, 35 titles will be available for perusal including, Motor Trend, Popular Mechanics, and Time. More titles are expected to debut in the coming weeks.

"You download the Next Issue Media reader once, and all the magazines will be presented there in single format," Morgan Guenther, CEO of Next Issue Media said. "We think we'll have a compelling proposition."

However if the Big Five is counting on this production immediately taking off, well, that's not likely. NIM requires an app to run—an app only available on Android tablets running Honeycomb. That nobody thought to port this to—much less not build it specifically for—the iPad and its spiffy new Retina display is an inauspicious way to kick off a publishing platform.[allthingsd, Adweek - Image: The AP]