This morning brings a boatload of news in the digital and iPhone application world. Gucci's launched their free app which includes personal playlists from Frida and Mark Ronson, a feature where you can play DJ and mix your own beats, and of course lookbooks and news from the design house. Every week seems to bring another designer entering the application marketplace, but props to Gucci for consulting with Mark Ronson to give theirs a bit more individuality. And, hey, it's free. What won't be free is the application that Condé Nast is launching for GQ in mid-November for $2.99 on iTunes. WWD reports that it will be a fully-translated version of the magazine, and also offer up a wide range of new platforms and possibilities for advertisers. The technology that created it was actually developed in-house at Condé, will be used across other titles, and can be adapted for any sort of e-reader that comes along. (We're assuming that means Barnes and Noble's The Nook, which was unveiled yesterday and even has a fashion spin with designer covers by Kate Spade, Jack Spade, and Jonathan Adler.)
What's most interesting to me about this new technology/application is that it is meant not only to turn a profit for the publisher and add value for advertisers, but that it will be monitored by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC). The ABC, among many other things, determines all the rate base rules and makes sure magazines aren't cheating when they report their circulation numbers. Because this application is ABC-approved (a first), GQ will be able to add these iPhone users to its rate base (which is a determining factor in the price of ads). This is a pretty significant industry shift and I'm as shocked as anybody that Condé Nast is first to market with it. And it makes me think that the other 10 applications they have in the works may actually be interesting. Plus, it's really nice to hear some positive news out of 4 Times Square.