Sports Illustrated to launch cross platform digital subscription plan

Time Inc just announced a new subscription plan for Sports Illustrated. $48 a year will get you full access to the iconic sports magazine on the web, Android, and WebOS. (Did you notice that iOS is missing?) The new platform will offer the “iconic print magazine” on all devices, starting with Android tablets and smartphones as well as a web-based version on si.com. Actually, the deal gets better: $48 covers the print subscription, too. Compared to the current price in iTunes ($5 an issue), that's a pretty good deal. Current Sports Illustrated subscribers will also get digital access added to their existing subscription. From the press release:

Time Inc. and SPORTS ILLUSTRATED announced the introduction of new “All Access” digital subscription plans that will deliver the iconic print magazine to consumers at all touch points (or on all platforms) beginning today with Android tablets and smartphones as well as on the web at www.si.com/magazine. This is the first of Time Inc.’s emerging digital subscription programs, designed to offer consumers a flexible approach to accessing its branded titles. Earlier this week, Time Inc. announced plans to make TIME, Fortune, People and SPORTS ILLUSTRATED available for subscription on the HP TouchPad when it is introduced later this year.

The new apps from the editors of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED are an extension of the title’s aggressive development initiative. In the last eight months SI has introduced a new magazine iPad app, SI Snapshot (developed in HTML5) for Google Chrome and a new SI Facebook Fantasy Football game. There are also several new Swimsuit digital products, including 3D, coming out on February 15. And last week, a concept for SPORTS ILLUSTRATED on the Android Honeycomb was showcased by Google.

“We view every new technology as an opportunity to provide our long-time subscribers with digital access to the magazine and at the same time attract new readers,” said Terry McDonell, Time Inc. Sports Group Editor. “Our editors and designers have stepped up to customize the best-possible version of SI for various platforms and technologies.”

Beginning today, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED “All Access” includes new magazine apps for the Samsung Galaxy and Android smartphones (OS 2.1 and higher); web access to the issue (after log in) can be found at www.si.com/magazine. The specific plans are:
• Print/Digital (Samsung Galaxy/Android Smartphone/Web): $48 annually or $4.99/month
• Digital Only: $3.99/month
• Current print subscribers have free access to the digital package throughout the remainder of their term

“This is a significant step in delivering SPORTS ILLUSTRATED’s award-winning journalism to sports fans everywhere and in any way they want it,” said Mark Ford, Time Inc. EVP and President of its Sports Group. “The new subscription options give consumers flexibility and convenience they desire and ensures that our multiple revenue streams continue to grow.” SPORTS ILLUSTRATED currently boasts nearly 3.15 million print subscribers.
Time Inc./Sports Illustrated “All Access” -2-

The executive team includes Editor-in Chief John Huey, Executive Vice Presidents Steve Sachs and Maurice Edelson and Senior Vice President/Chief Informational Officer Mitch Klaif.

“We are in the first inning of development and with this new, expanded commerce infrastructure we can ensure that our readers will be able to enjoy their favorite titles across an array of digital platforms and devices as the game unfolds,” said Randall Rothenberg, Time Inc. EVP/Chief Digital Officer.

About Nate Hoffelder (11394 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

1 Comment on Sports Illustrated to launch cross platform digital subscription plan

  1. A most rational pricing plan: $3.99 a month Digital only vs $4.99 a month for both print and digital. So the incremental cost of the print copy is $1 a month.
    And the full-year subscription basically throws in the print edition for free.
    Definitely priced to move.
    If all the mag publishers follow this example there might very well be a profitable digital future for them.

    Now they need to extend it to the Kindle and Nook ecosystems.

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