The Center Cannot Hold

February 16, 2011

The WIRED iPad app defines magazine apps in the marketplace. It is unquestionably the best magazine app I've ever seen. Completely interactive and 100% unique, it's built specifically for the iPad in a way that other magazine apps aren't even trying to be. Infographics replace traditional articles, moving graphics supplant still design, the content is amazing and overall it's a high concept effort that is executed perfectly. And along with The New Yorker, another Conde Nast product, it's coming to the Android Market.

Android, the tortoise to Apple's hare.

According to research firm Canalys, Android's smartphone market share grew 615% between 2009 and 2010. But iPad still dominates with approximately 75% of the tablet market. Conde Nast's Android apps will be designed for the soon to be released Motorola Xoom using Android's Honeycomb operating system. Just as they did with the iPad, Conde Nast is catching the coming wave. While most of the magazine publishing industry is hearing a death knell, Conde Nast is consistently producing exemplary, platform specific content and putting it in the right places.

While it is yet unclear if Android will have the same level of success on tablets as they have had with smartphones (all signs point to yes!), they are still poised to capitalized greatly on a market that has and will continue to revolutionize communication. We are at the precipice. Morgan Stanley Research predicts that shipments of mobile devices will outpace shipments of computers in 2011. The desktop family computer is sliding into obsolescence as more people seek to interact with information in a different way.

What is even more interesting it how we use these devices. 47% of the time users dedicate to mobile devices is spent on 'new activities.' Mobile devices are supplementary and dynamic - finding for us what ever it is we need at the very moment we need it.

The Mobile World Congress is underway right now in Barcelona. With early announcements like the unveiling of a Sony Android-powered PlayStation phone and new language editions of Foursquare, the conference is sure to yield new and interesting ways for consumers to explore and define their mobile ecosystem.