Friday, May 28, 2010

Morning Brief: iPad hits Japan; Real Simple, Newsweek apps coming; Daily Mail still leading UK news site

The iPad hit Japan last night and the New York Times was there to report what it describes as the "shock" of yet another major electronic gadget hit that is coming from America instead of Japan.

“Apple never fails to wow me, time after time,” said Sayuri Aruga, 38, who sings in a progressive rock band in Tokyo. Ms. Aruga, who said she owns multiple iPods, an iPhone, and a MacBook Air, flew to San Francisco in April just to get her hands on the Wi-Fi model of the iPad, but now wants a 3G model, she said. She arrived at the store at 4 a.m., four hours before the store opened. “I’m going to do everything on it — read, write music,” she said. “The possibilities are endless.”
The Times reports that Japanese publisher Shufunotomo, the publisher of women's titles, will bring about 50 magazine and book titles to the iPad, while Yahoo Japan plans to offer free 100 comics for the iPad.

With Apple launching the iPad internationally today, you'd think the prospects for Apple's tablet was all rosy. But the New York Post reports that several major media companies -- and they name Time Warner and NBC Universal specifically -- have told Apple they won't reformat their video libraries to accommodate the iPad because Flash still dominates the web.

That all this with a grain of salt, however, because I have detected more than a bit of cynicism coming from the Murdoch owned publications of late.

Look for more iPad apps from Time Inc., but still using the same model of selling the apps at cover prices -- something that has actually made most iPad users extremely angry (don't these folk listen to their customers?).
Next up is Real Simple, selling for $4.99, the same price as Time magazine. That should prove popular (snark). It should be noted that as of today, less than 6 percent of iTunes reviewers consider the Time app a five-star app; while 74 percent consider it worthless. (I know these numbers are a bit bogus -- but at some point they need to step back and try a different approach, if only to test the possibilities.)

In news that won't get many excited, Newsweek is said to be launching their iPad app next week. Will anyone (other than TNM) notice its launch?

The Guardian seemed to take great pleasure in reporting that the Mail Online, the website for the Daily Mail was the U.K.'s most visited newspaper site with slightly over 40 million monthly browsers, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations. The Guardian's own site ranked second.

So why would this delight the Guardian? Well, I think they love reporting the fact that Rupert Murdoch's News International had withdrawn its websites from the ABC's audit last month as he takes his sites behind a paywall.