Some Thoughts on the Demise of The Daily, the First iPad-only Newspaper

The Daily

Well, the grand experiment of the first iPad only newspaper is soon coming to an end. The Daily, published by Rupert Murdoch’s NewsCorp, will be publishing a final farewell issue on December 15 – around two months shy of two years from its launch in the iPad App Store.

The Daily has over 100,000 subscribers but appears to have fallen a long way short of its owners’ financial targets – and probably far short of breaking even. Little surprise there though with the early reports that $30 million was spent on it before it even hit the App Store and of a staff of over 100 for the title.

Here’s a few excerpt chunks from the press release from The Daily:

Two years ago, we set out to create a revolutionary product that people would love.  The Daily delivered great original reporting, excellent design, and custom interactivity to users every day.  Although we have over 100,000 passionate paying subscribers, unfortunately we have not been able to build a big enough audience fast enough to make our business model work. …

Our iPad app will cease publishing on Dec. 15 with a farewell issue.  The Daily has a strong social media presence and a large, engaged community of fans and we intend to continue to engage our social following with our unique take on the news. 

The Daily innovated every day. We broke some great stories. We made a publication that a lot of people love. We should be proud of what we achieved.

I was fascinated with the idea of The Daily the first time I heard about it – but found it disappointing right from the off.

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The Daily Cuts Staff, Goes Portrait Only

The Daily

The Daily, the first iPad-only newspaper, has announced that it is making major staff cuts and stripping away features. The announcement comes not long after reports that the title is in danger of being shutdown – and the cuts being made are certainly significant ones.

As AllThingsD reports, 50 full-time employees of The Daily are being released – that’s nearly 30% of the full-time staff. Two other big cutbacks are these:

– There will be no more separate Opinion section – occasional opinion pieces and editorials will be included within the News section (and clearly identified) and the Sports section is being partly outsourced: “Sports reporting will now be provided by content partners, like Fox Sports, while existing features like photo galleries and the ability to track favorite teams via a customizable sports page will remain.”

– The Daily now supports only portrait mode, though videos can still be viewed in landscape.

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The Daily Launches New In-app WKND Magazine

The Daily WKND Magazine

The Daily, the original iPad-only newspaper, has launched a new in-app magazine today. The magazine is called WKND and it’s presented as a new section within The Daily which will presumably feature in the Saturday and Sunday issues of the iPad newspaper.

Here’s The Daily’s own little intro for the new magazine section:

Meet The Daily’s new in-app magazine WKND, featuring food, fashion, travel, reviews, exclusive interviews, and more. Plus, we’ve made some updates to other sections too. Curl up and dig in! You’re going to love weekends with The Daily.

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Sunday Times for iPad Updated, Added to Newsstand

Sunday Times iPad edition

The Sunday Times UK iPad edition has been updated today, to Version 2.2. The biggest change in this update is that it adds Newsstand support. Newsstand has proved unpopular with many users, but appears to be a success for some of the bigger publishers who have embraced it

Here’s the full change list for this update to the Sunday Times iPad edition:

Newsstand support — after updating, the ST app will move inside the Newsstand folder
Background download. Sections will continue to download even if your iPad goes to sleep or when you leave the app. When in background mode, downloads are now faster
Improved Store allowing for easy access to back issues and featured sections
Delete whole editions from the Store
Enhanced Live News Deck — with Galleries and full Twitter feeds
QuickLists — Improved navigation with QuickLists on every page

The ability to delete editions is a nice addition. As always with Newsstand titles, it will be interesting to see if the promised background downloads actually work as advertised.

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The Guardian and New York Times iPad Editions Updated

TheGuardianiPadEdition

Two quality newspapers’ iPad editions have received updates this week – The Guardian’s Guardian iPad Edition and The New York Times’ NYTimes for iPad.

Guardian iPad Edition has been updated to Version 1.0.2. Notable new features include support for saving articles to Instapaper, native iOS 5 Twitter integration, and the addition of Weekend magazine from mid-January.

NYTimes for iPad has been updated to Version 2.1.7. The big new feature here is the addition  of live election night voting results throughout the (Presidential race) year – starting with the Iowa caucuses in early January. It also contains a few bug fixes and performance enhancements.

Both are free apps with subscription plans available via In-App purchase. Guardian iPad Edition works with Newsstand to offer automatic issue downloads in the background. NYTimes for iPad does not as yet.

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Murdoch’s ‘The Daily’ to Hit the iPad Next Week?

The Daily – the heavily anticipated, iPad-only newspaper title from Rupert Murdoch’s Newscop – is set to launch next week, on Wednesday January 19th, according to a report over at Forbes.com today. That’s the planned launch date forThe Daily, the iPad-only publication News Corp. has been feverishly developing. The company has yet to say boo […]

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