Following the success of full-color, interactive magazines–particularly women’s magazines–on the Nook Color, Barnes & Noble (NYSE: BKS) is bringing them to its Nook iPad app. Or, well, you’ll be able to read them on the iPad app after purchasing them elsewhere.
The company is updating its iPad app to allow access to 175 magazines and newspapers–like Esquire, Maxim, Elle, O, the Oprah Magazine and the Washington Post–that it previously offered only through the Nook Color. The titles will be available via subscription and as single copies at nooknewsstand.com–but not as in-app subscriptions, now that Apple’s new in-app purchasing rules have hit the Nook.
In a further nod to Apple’s new rules, the press release carefully notes, “Customers can shop for new content in Barnes & Noble’s expansive NOOK Bookstore™ of more than 2 million titles by going to www.bn.com/ebooks through the Safari browser on their device or any computer, or by using any of the award-winning NOOK devices. All purchases will automatically appear in the NOOK Library on their iOS device.”
The magazines will be available “in the coming days,” but are not on Nook Newsstand yet, nor is the iPad mentioned there yet. It’s possible B&N made this announcement a little earlier than it had originally intended to so that its news of the day would be something beyond “Barnes & Noble removes Nook store from iOS apps” (not that the company released that as an official press release, of course).
But even if the announcement is a little early, it makes sense for B&N to be doing more with the magazines on the iPad. The New York Times noted earlier this year that publishers of women’s magazines were surprised by how well their titles were selling on the Nook Color, and the device is heavily marketed to women. With its iPad app update, B&N could be trying to achieve greater distribution of Nook Newsstand titles to men, who are more likely to be iPad owners than women.