Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Late afternoon news briefs: premium home delivery returns in Detroit; Swiss & Austrian journals release iPad apps, experiment with pricing strategies

Want a newspaper delivered to your door? It will cost you!

The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News announced on Saturday that they will resume home delivery in certain areas where they had previously cut back -- bringing back seven day delivery. The catch is that they are calling it premium home-delivery and will, therefore, more charge more.

Premium home delivery to me is a newspaper delivered every morning by a neighborhood kid on a bike. As anyone who gets a home delivered paper knows, a paper thrown on the driveway (or near the driveway) by an independent contractor is hardly premium home delivery.

The Freep and News claim that the move is being made out of fear that the US Postal Service will soon stop mail delivery on Saturdays.

Late last week newsroom Guild members approved their contract with the Milwaukee Sentinel, voting 54-10 in favor. The contract will mean no pay raises for newsroom members, but will supposedly prevent further layoffs.

Editions Plus released the first in a series of iPad app for the iPad: one for Bon à Savoir, a Swiss cooking magazine, and the other for K-Tipp, an Austrian consumer products testing journal.

I'm afraid I don't know much about either publication, but I mention them to point out that the pricing experiments going on on the iPad: Bon à Savoir, has launched its app as a free download and with free content for a limited time. Then in the Fall the magazine intends to begin charging 3.20 Swiss francs per issue -- or approximately 30 percent off the cover price.