National Geographic Magazine For iPad Brings Innovative Everest Coverage

There is no doubt that the iPad is changing our perceptions of traditional media in profound ways. Apple’s innovative tablet has put news, information and entertainment quite literally at our fingertips. As a result, organizations that have been in the publishing and broadcasting business for a long time are now adapting to take advantage of this still relatively new technology. One of those organizations is National Geographic, which has just added a new feature to the digital version of its magazine that could very well be a glimpse into the future of interactive journalism.

Nat Geo was one of the first magazines to appear in digital form on the iPad and since its inception the electronic version has always offered unique features that set it apart from its print counterpart. Some of those features include embedded audio and video, interactive maps and enhanced photo galleries. But the latest digital issue of the magazine, which was released on Monday, introduced a new element know as “Field Test,” which will provide real time updates from various expeditions as they unfold. The first of those expeditions is an Everest climb that is underway now.

Seeing the Field Test in action is quite a revelation on the direction that digital magazines could be headed in the future. In addition to a series of traditional articles about the climbers and their attempt to summit Everest along the seldom-visited West Ridge, this interactive section includes daily expedition dispatches, a photo album that is automatically updated with new images as they are released and an indicator of current weather conditions in Base Camp. There is even a map of the route that shows the team’s location as they proceed up the mountain.

The entire package is very impressive and is definitely a unique way to keep a “magazine” current even after its release. The Field Test is a bit slow to update at times, but when it does complete its sync it provides fresh content that readers will enjoy coming back to on a regular basis, particularly if the expedition happens to be one of special interest to them. Apparently this technology isn’t just being used for the Everest expedition and it will become a monthly staple of the iPad version of National Geographic. Find out more by clicking here. [iTunes Link]

[Photo courtesy National Geographic]

New App Delivers National Geographic News To The iPad

For decades the National Geographic Society has been on the cutting edge of exploration and science, and its iconic yellow-bordered magazine has delivered news from those fronts into American homes for nearly 125 years. With the advent of the Internet age, the organization brought that wealth of knowledge online at and has delivered daily updates on topics that included everything from space travel and the environment to scientific expeditions and beyond. Yesterday, the Society launched a new app for the iPad that delivers that same award winning content in a new and beautiful way.

The new app is called National Geographic Today and it is designed from the ground up to deliver daily news, videos, articles and more directly from the Nat Geo site. It does an excellent job of formatting all of that content for the iPad’s screen and includes support for the Retina Display on the New iPad. That means the text is crisp and easy to read and the high-resolution photos – a trade mark of National Geographic – simply pop off the screen.

Launching the app brings up a dynamic columnar view that lists dates for the past week and provides a brief glimpse of a photo from each of those days. Tapping one of the columns causes the others to smoothly slide out of the way, revealing the full image underneath. A pop-up window provides information on the photo itself including when and where it was taken. That image is just the cover shot for the day, however, and readers can access all the daily news, videos and other interactive content through an unobtrusive and intuitive interface that falls along the right side of the screen.

Of course, this is the age of social media and the app has its bases well covered there as well. All of the articles, photos, videos and various other content can be shared via Facebook, Twitter and email, and readers can also “Like” stories and post comments quickly and easily.

If you’re a fan of National Geographic and own an iPad you’ll definitely want to add this app to your tablet. It is absolutely free and will likely provide you with hours of education and entertainment. Download it now by clicking here.