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article imageApple acquires 'Netflix for magazines' app Texture

By James Walker     Mar 13, 2018 in Technology
Apple has announced it will acquire Texture for an undisclosed amount. Texture provides a subscription-based app that offers users access to an unlimited number of digital magazines. The service has been described as a Netflix for magazines.
Apple announced the impending acquisition in a news post this week. The company said it has "signed an agreement" to purchase Texture, launched in 2010 by Next Issue Media LLC. Apple previously awarded the app an App Store reward back in 2016.
Texture currently offers access to over 200 magazine titles for a flat monthly subscription price of $9.99. Users can read digital copies of any of the magazines inside the Texture app. Each issue is available in full but includes special formatting to improve its in-app presentation. The app's available on all major mobile platforms.
Next Issue Media was created as a joint venture between publishers including Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp., Rogers Communications and Time Inc. As reported by TechCrunch, the company has raised over $90 million in funding, including $50 million contributed by external publishers including BuzzFeed and Vox Media.
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Apple's thought to be purchasing the app in an attempt to appease publishers and news organisations. The company's push into aggregated content with its Apple News service has unsettled publishers which prefer to connect with consumers through first-part channels. It's possible Apple will end up incorporating elements of Texture into an expanded News service. The app may also mark a revival of Apple's abandoned "Newsstand" product, a marketplace for newspaper and magazine apps.
In a statement, Apple said it is "excited" to be purchasing Texture. The company added that it is "committed to quality journalism," which suggests it will use Texture in an attempt to improve its standing with media organisations. Apple's decision to acquire Texture could significantly boost the service, which was reported to have 150,000 subscribers in 2014.
"We’re excited Texture will join Apple, along with an impressive catalog of magazines from many of the world’s leading publishers," said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. "We are committed to quality journalism from trusted sources and allowing magazines to keep producing beautifully designed and engaging stories for users."
Apple hasn’t commented on its plans for Texture. The service will continue to operate as an independent app for the foreseeable future. It's currently available on iOS, Android, Amazon Kindle Fire and Windows 10. Once the acquisition completes, Apple will purchase the service and its employees.
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