Atavist on web-reader

A snapshot from the web-reader in Atavist Create, taken from 'Newsman. Serviceman.' by Sarah Elms

While the Atavist launched a website when it first came to the market around a year and a half ago, its publishing focus was on mobile devices.

The company was "riding the wave" of the mobile device trend, senior producer Olivia Koski told Journalism.co.uk, and this meant a focus on software which met the needs of portable devices.

But now, as the platform prepares for its next publication in the autumn, it is unveiling a number of new developments - including a web-reader and subscriptions.

As well as for its own content, the web-reader is also being introduced within the Atavist's yet-to-be-launched "create" software, aimed at individual publishers and others interested in producing their own multimedia stories.

The software is currently in beta testing and testers can currently publish for free, both to the web and also to the new Atavist Create app. The Atavist is hoping to release a consumer version by the end of the year.
  • The web-reader
The Atavist's philosophy, Koski said, "is to be on every device out there", and therefore the launch of the web-reader will help it achieve this.

"I think the reason it's been delayed for so long is because ... our biggest priority is just a beautiful experience for the reader and that's reflected in the design of our app," Koski said.

"Our whole approach to storytelling is to really get a more in-depth approach and to take your time with something, so I think we really wanted to make sure that anything that we publish on the web had that same experience and same design that we have with our app."
  • Subscriptions
As well as a web-reader, the Atavist's next issue will also see the introduction of subscriptions, offering access to one story a month on any platform. The pricing for the subscriptions has not yet been announced.

The next issue will feature the Atavist's first graphic novel, which it developed custom software for, called Stowaway, by Josh Neufeld.
  • Atavist Create
And as well as the impending launches for the next issue, the Atavist is working on its 'create' software, due for launch later in the year.

An important aspect of the software, built for individual publishers, is the social media side, Koski added, and "how to help people connect with each other as a community".

"I think what we're really seeking to do with this Atavist Create is to build a community and figure out the best tools for people to share stories with each other."

She added that there "are not boundaries on the type of content" people can produce with Atavist Create.

While long-form non-fiction is in Atavist's roots, it is "open" to good content regardless.

"If people are producing really exciting things with our software, that's something we'll be excited about and we'll want to highlight."

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