The idea that print media is dying is nothing new. Newspaper and magazine publishers have seen steep profit declines, some being forced to shut down. Magazines publishers haven’t been able to digitally transition as easily as newspapers without losing the authentic experience that print once allowed. Within the last month, we’ve seen two publications release their concepts into the wild. Time has made public the digital future of Sports Illustrated, and it seems as though they didn’t do it alone.
Within the first 10 seconds, we’re presented with a tablet device that is eerily similar to something the tech world is already familiar with. There’s a huge screen with a sole button that, presumably, takes you ‘home’. If there is any consistent rumor, it’s that the device will be a giant iPhone. At the 1:08 mark, a menu pops up with a slew of icons. The three left ones? They look almost identical to those found throughout the iPhone UI. Even the volume icon within the second menu just after is nearly the same. When the circular option pops up that allows a user to share the article, several of these icons are scattered within the iPhone UI. Throughout the video, and especially at the 2:00 mark, the curly ‘i’ that’s used to assumingly represent more information is identical and found all over the iPhone OS, most notably within the weather application. The icing on the cake comes at 2:17 when the rigor mortis hand peeps into Kurt Warner’s stats, there’s an obvious OS X scroll bar below his fantasy points.
Earlier in the year, it was reported that Jobs was shopping around the idea to publishing companies. Perhaps people at Apple have been working with both Time and Condé Nast to get their content ready for digital digestion. All of this could just be a coincidence and maybe Time simply used the iPhone SDK for icons and whatnot. It’s a bit strange, though, that both Sports Illustrated and Wired tablet idea renditions look all too similar. There’s got to be more to these concepts. Take a look at both videos and let us know what you think.