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Magazine publishers earning more selling access to their archives than from Apple iTunes store

By Dominic Ponsford

Some magazine publishers are earning more money from selling access to their archives than they are from digital sales via Apple’s iTunes store.

According to digital magazine specialist Exact Editions, sales of archive subscriptions are a growing source of revenue for magazine publishers.

Last month it launched digital archives for Opera magazine (over 800 issues since 1950) and Geographical (94 issues since 1935).

Other titles it is working with include: Gramophone, The Literary Review, Hali, Prospect, Dazed & Confused, The Numismatist, When Saturday Comes, The World of Fine Wine and Resurgence.

Exact Editions scans the archived editions into a searchable database and then offers premium  subscriptions to institutions, schools, corporations and universities around the world.

An archive magazine subscription can cost a university up to £800 a year.

Managing director of Exact Editions Daryl Rayner said: “A large proportion of our partners’ magazines are earning more from institutional subscriptions than they are from app sales in iTunes. It is an important market, not to be neglected.”

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