Today Rupert Murdoch announced The Daily, a dedicated iPad (s aapl) newspaper app available now on the App Store. The app looks to distance itself from existing iPad news apps by offering completely original content and a design tailor-made for the iPad platform. Here are the details.
The Daily (s nwsa) will be available for a subscription of either $0.99 a week or $39.99 a year (roughly $0.14 a day, as Murdoch pointed out during the press conference). As per its name, The Daily will be published 365 days a year, beginning with today’s inaugural edition. The newspaper will feature video, images, animation, audio and text to convey its information, depending on the story. It features a navigation interface that resembles cover flow in iTunes, and offers professional audio voice-overs of top stories and a video anchor who takes you through the news of the day.
Unlike many existing print and newspaper magazine conversion apps, The Daily seems to feature a lot of clickable and interactive elements. Web links will bring up pages in a built-in browser, and Twitter feeds are accessible from within the app. There’s also an in-app text and audio commenting system for greater reader interaction. The app will also be able to pull in breaking news using Twitter and other sources, so that it stays fresh throughout the day without undergoing the kind of massively frequent overhaul you see on blogs. It’ll be interesting to see how The Daily strikes this balance.
No back-issues will exist at launch, and users instead will have to save articles for later from within the app or retrieve them on the web via HTML. Plans for improved access to older content are in the works, but won’t be included at launch.
At launch today, The Daily will be available only to customers shopping in the U.S. store, and will be free for the first two weeks. According to a leaked official memo published by Gizmodo (which was completely accurate regarding other details), News Corp. is planning to bring The Daily to international markets (and other tablets) in the coming months.
Apple VP of Internet Services Eddy Cue announced the inclusion of new in-app recurring subscription billing with “one click,” but didn’t offer any further details. Cue noted that an upcoming (“soon” was the only timeline hinted at) Apple announcement would detail this new feature further, including implementation plans among other publishers.
Basically, Murdoch and News Corp. seem to have followed a lot of the advice I suggested for news media on the iPad, and I’m excited about the results. We’ll have a look at The Daily in action coming up soon.
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