Q&A on mag+’s iOS SDK

Q: What is the mag+ SDK?

A: The mag+ SDK is another tool in your iOS app-building toolbox. It allows you to embed pixel-perfect interactive content created with the mag+ creative toolset and leverage the mag+ publishing platform for distributing content. It contains two pieces: (1) MIBKit, the MIB file rendering engine and (2) DennisKit, the connection to our distribution backend for delivering content to your apps.


Q: What’s possible with the mag+ SDK?

A: The sky’s the limit! You can customize the standard mag+ app experience for your unique needs or build the mag+ rendering engine into any other app to add premium content delivery as a unique feature to your app.


Q: What are the limitations?

A: Your imagination. The mag+ SDK “only” adds rendering of mag+ content on screen, and communication with the mag+ publishing cloud servers. Everything else is Bring Your Own Magic.


Q: What are the specific features and capabilities that the mag+ SDK offers that are not available in the standard mag+ app?

A: The core reader function available in the SDK is the same as the reader in our off-the-shelf white label app. We also include the basic features, such as the thumbnail scrubber, playlists, and page-length indicators; but everything around the reader is customizable. That means you can design your own menus, navigation, store, library, extra features and third-party services, just to name a few possibilities.


Q: What types of apps could make use of the SDK?

A: Anyone that wants to deliver pixel perfect and interactive content to an app can use the SDK. Below are a few examples:


  • Publishers: May want to deliver a magazine and add features or services mag+ doesn’t offer in its standard app; like a different analytics platform, a unique storefront or a different menu and navigation.
  • Retailer: Can use the SDK to build an e-commerce app with a dedicated shopping cart function that has a direct tie into its e-commerce system.
  • Movie Studios: Could use the SDK to build a companion app to a new Blu-ray release that automatically syncs with the movie as it plays.
  • Gaming: A game could add a “tips and tricks” issue as an added function.

The possibilities of using the SDK are endless.


Q: Do I need developers to work with the SDK?

A: Yes, you would need iOS developers to integrate the SDK – which is a pair of iOS libraries – into the app.


Q: Will mag+ do the custom development for me to build my app?

A: No, as a platform company, we do not do any custom development work. However, we can connect you with agencies that have licensed the mag+ SDK who can do that type of work.


Q: What is the advantage to using the SDK versus just building my own custom app?

A: The great benefit of the SDK is that it allows you to still take advantage of the other two pieces of the mag+ ecosystem: the InDesign-based creative toolset and the Publish distribution and admin backend. These two pieces represent years of development work by mag+ and would be extremely time consuming, and expensive to recreate on your own. The SDK also gives you a pre-built rendering engine so you don’t have to create a format from scratch. You can use all the mag+ components while having full control over your end user’s app experience.


Q: What is the pricing?

A: The SDK is available as a unique license at $3499 per month. Any apps created with the SDK are subject to standard mag+ publish license fees. This enables agencies or publishers to pay one license for the SDK and create as many apps as they like with it. There is a 12-month minimum commitment for the SDK, and we also offer a 30-day full evaluation trial for $999. If you find it doesn’t fit your needs, no problem—you won’t owe us another dime.


Q: Can I get access to the SDK to evaluate its potential?

A: Yes, we are offering a 30-day trial of the SDK for $999, and distribution is handled through the mag+ SDK github repository.


Q: What happens if I stop paying the license fee? Do you take down my app?

A: No, once you build and launch and app, it is yours. However, any app created with the mag+ SDK must have a standard mag+ Publish license associated with it. As long as that license is active, your app will remain functional. If that license ends, the app can no longer connect with our backend to serve issues, but the MIB renderer capabilities remain unaltered.


Q: What platform is the SDK available for?

A: The SDK is available for iOS and Android. Both the iOS and Android SDKs work for smartphones and tablets.


Q: What programming language is required to use the iOS mag+ SDK?

A: The mag+ SDK for iOS written in Objective-C according to modern Cocoa Touch conventions.


Q: Can I embed MIBs directly into my app or use my own content distribution system?

A: Yes, you can use the MIB reader component without requiring access to the distribution backend.


Q: Will the subscription API work with the SDK?

A: Yes, all hooks needed are available. It is up to you to implement the custom web views needed for user interaction.


Q: Is the playlist included in the SDK?

A: Yes, a basic playlist is provided out of the box, as well as low level hooks if you want to provide a fully custom playlist experience.


Q: Will the mag+ SDK allow apps to take advantage of other functions of the iPad (i.e. camera, maps…)?

A: Yes. The mag+ SDK does not impose any limitations on what can be done in your app.


Q: Are analytics included in the SDK?

A: Yes, the SDK includes the hooks necessary to build in any analytics engine of your choice.


Q: Any special requirements for local storage of data handled imposed by the SDK?

A: No, it is the responsibility of your app to store local content on the device.


Q: Can I add additional sharing options through the SDK?

A: Yes, you can add any third-party services you like to your custom app.


Q: Why are you releasing an SDK?

A: mag+ sees a thousand and one ways premium content can be delivered in the app ecosystem, and we can’t possibly serve them all with our white-label app. As a company founded by editors and designers, we’re interested in creativity and innovation. We think giving people the SDK will lead to all kinds of amazing things we could never have dreamed up on our own that will inspire all of us.


For more information contact mag+ Sales representative or email: sales@magplus.com