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Case Studies | The Spectator

The world’s oldest weekly magazine, The Spectator, enjoys incredible digital success

Team Pugpig worked extensively with this iconic news journal to beautifully replicate the look and feel of its premium magazine into their app. As well as digital editions, the app showcases podcasts and editorially-curated content in true The Spectator style.

The Spectator mobile app

About The Spectator

Established in 1828, The Spectator is the go-to destination for thought provoking political, cultural and current affairs journalism. Our partnership with them proves that the world’s oldest magazine can certainly embrace digital – with huge success at that.

The main objectives

  • To replicate the truly iconic style and format of The Spectator magazine across the entire app
  • To make it easier to navigate through different types of content and broadcasts
  • Significantly reduce their technology spend and improve the reliability of their app 

What we did

Editorially curated home content feed

Given that The Spectator is a publication centred around opinion pieces and the latest news, it made sense for the main content feed within the app to be completely curated by the editors. Readers can dive into a range of carefully selected content from across the app with ease. 

Custom design so the app truly feels like an extension of the magazine

We spent a lot of time on custom design and styling to ensure The Spectator app really embodies the recognisable look and feel of the magazine. The home feed, for example, features highlights from each section and a range of card types.  

Dynamic across all devices

The Spectator has a large tablet audience and wanted the app to have a dynamic design that worked beautifully across all devices and orientations. We built specific layouts of cards for both portrait and landscape tablet views to make sure the app looked world class no matter what.

The results

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Low effort for The Spectator team

By choosing our publishing platform, the team at The Spectator have been able to focus their development resources on other key areas of the business while not just retaining but improving their mobile app performance.

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A highly rated mobile app

The Spectator app currently holds a 4.8/5 star rating in the App Store and is in the top 25 apps in the ‘Magazines’ category. It’s a real example of how the world’s oldest magazine can enjoy huge digital success.

Testimonial Author Image

Pugpig turns something that should be extremely complicated (building a high quality app) into something that’s extremely simple, and does it for a tenth of the cost

Zack Christenson
Editor, The Spectator World

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