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Update: since this post was created we have changed our pricing. Now Newsstand apps are free for magazines publishers. Read more about our new offer.

When we first started thinking about PressPad we had plenty of ideas how it can work and what features it might have. But whatever level of advancement we were talking about one thing didn’t change: we wanted PressPad to be a self-service publishing tool.

You may ask why self-service is so important for us. When we first did research about publishing industry lots of products (not just mobile publishing, but all range of services) worked in old-school model: they let you contact a sales representative, next prepare a written quotation for you and get back to you when it is done.

We believe that time has come for publishing industry to incorporate SaaS (Software As A Service) into their workflow. From months of customer development and testing we know that our main clients are small and medium publishers. While this category of clients may be too small to consider enterprise or tailor-made solutions it is just perfect for SaaS.

When you think about using SaaS products you should consider those benefits:

  • You get what big corporate clients would get but at a fraction of the price. This is because the price of developing and maintaining our product is split between large amount of users.
  • Self-service products are easy to use and doesn’t require big sales and support team – this results in more time for us to develop new features and make our product better for everyone.
  • When we update our product every single client is getting an upgrade. No matter for how long he or she is working with us – this is nature of SaaS products that we really like.

Now back to PressPad. This is what we mean by self-service:

  1. Learn about our offer and pricing from the mainpage.
  2. Sign up and immediately start using our product.
  3. Once you upload your content go straight to your iPad and preview how it is going to look like (use our  PressViewer app to do so).
  4. When you are satisfied with your content on the iPad go and order your app (once again: right on the website, without need for contacting anyone and waiting for they reply).
  5. Once all that is done, we will post your Newsstand app to the App Store (see? No need for Apple Developer Account) and contact you in few days when it is approved.
The best part? You can do all of that yourself! We are always here to help you and answer all your questions, but the process seems to be pretty straightforward and our customers love it.
We like the list that Mag+ compiled the other day of all the companies that work with tablet publishing. We used it as a reference point and selected SaaS (-ish) companies from it. Heres the break down: Saas Tablet Publishing Companies Compared (click to enlarge).
When calculating prices and writing down features we had this assumption in mind: we are a small publisher; we publish simple PDF issue each month and it is downloaded ~400 times; we are interested only in Apple’s Newsstand (with push notifications, subscriptions, etc.); and most important–we want to do it all ourselfs.