The Daily, the first iPad-only newspaper, is celebrating its first anniversary today. It’s published by Rupert Murdoch’s Newscorp and has had backing to the tune of over $30 million before it even hit the App Store.
I did a review of The Daily last March (a month after its launch) – and though I found it a promising concept it was disappointing in many ways as well. Here’s a slice of my sum-up in that early review:
The Daily is a promising title, purely on the basis that it is the first of its kind and News Corp is obviously committed to making it a top-notch title for the iPad and possibly other tablets as well.
It has a long way to go to deliver on its promise though. Right now its speed and performance issues are severe, and they are killing the user experience in the app. They’re bad enough that it is tough to stick with the title.
Sadly, a number of those really basic performance issues stayed with The Daily throughout much of its first year. Millions might have been spent in many areas, but it sure didn’t look like many pennies were being put towards making the app work well.
Even as late as November of last year I found the app frustrating enough to publish a post titled ‘Does Anyone at The Daily Have a Clue How Crap It Is?’.
It has made some significant improvements since then, but I would still say that on the whole it was a disappointing first year for The Daily. Even today, after numerous updates that are supposedly focused on performance, load times, and proper background downloads of new content the app still seems far from excellent in any of those respects.
I watched The Daily’s video marking its one year anniversary, where they thank readers, talk about how it was a great first year, and mention new products and new platforms coming in the next year. I would have loved to hear that they recognize some of the app’s basic shortcomings and plan to address those, before worrying about expanding to new platforms. Why go off and publish a new Android app when your iPad version is still at a 1.x version number and very much feels like it?
I know we have quite a few readers of The Daily here. What do you all think of its first year? Are you planning to keep reading and or subscribing?