When Apple launched subscriptions for iPad publications back in February, it effectively became a digital newsstand. With iOS 5, it will formalize the process with an official Newsstand app, exec Scott Forstall announced today at Apple’s WWDC today.
Much like its iBooks app is a store for digital books, Newsstand will be an online magazine rack where you can keep and organize all of your newspaper and magazine app subscriptions. The latest cover will be shown in the app, and new issues will be downloaded in the background. It is a clean, well-lit place where you can place all of your digital magazine subscriptions. (No doubt, it could also be a good place to try out new iPad publications, although no word on how promotions will be run in the app).
In mobile Safari, Apple will also improve the reading experience with a new feature called Reader, which takes out a lot of the extraneous garbage from web pages and presents the text of web pages in an easy-to-read format. If an article on a website has multipel pages, it pulls them all into a single page. There is also an Instapaper feature where you can save articles to your Reading List for later. (This one was expected).
Apple clearly is emphasizing that the iPad is for reading.