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March 12, 2018, 3:23 p.m.

Apple acquires Texture, the magazine-reading app you always hear advertised on podcasts

Texture, the magazine-reading app that launched back in 2011 as Next Issue Media, as a joint venture among several big publishers, and rebranded as Texture in 2015, has been acquired by Apple, the companies announced Monday. The app is $9.99 a month for unlimited access to more than 200 magazines, and $14.99 a month if you want access to weekly magazines like The New Yorker and People. The new app will include some curated reading-list type options, Recode’s Peter Kafka notes, or you can just keep reading magazines cover to cover.

I’ve gotten a couple free or very reduced trials of Texture over the years (one through Groupon!) and was surprised how much I like it (“magazine reading! It’s so…pleasant!”) but then I stopped ever using my iPad, and so I never paid the full price to subscribe. It’s not that fun to read this stuff on a phone. The ideal time for Texture, I feel, would have been in the early oughts, except there were no iPads then; it’s not a coincidence that Next Issue Media only launched it when magazines were really starting to be in trouble.

So why does Apple want it? “We are committed to quality journalism from trusted sources and allowing magazines to keep producing beautifully designed and engaging stories for users,” Eddy Cue said in a statement (Apple timed the announcement with Cue’s appearance at SXSW, where he also briefly discussed the news in a conversation with CNN’s Dylan Byers) . “UNLIKE SOME COMPANIES COUGH FACEBOOK COUGH,” he didn’t need to add.

POSTED     March 12, 2018, 3:23 p.m.
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