Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Daily is launched in the App Store: a first look at News Corp.'s iPad-only digital news product

At an event at the Guggenheim Museum, News Corp. head Rupert Murdoch unveiled The Daily, the first iPad-only news publication designed and backed by a major media giant.
While The Daily will eventually cost readers 99 cents per week, or $40 per year, thanks to sponsor Verizon readers will have two weeks of free access.

Although the new publication takes advantage of all the bells and whistle familiar to iPad owners, the app itself opens up in a very traditional way with a front cover and tablet of contents. An introductory video helps readers navigate the stories.

Sections include News, Gossip (yes, this is the second section), Opinion, Arts & life, Apps & Games (!), and Sports.
Although the app can be used in both portrait and landscape modes, some news stories must be turned to portrait to read the story. Other stories can be viewed in landscape, however.

As for the actual layouts, this app is not in the NYT style of iPad publications. Instead, the publication has a more magazine feel and style of design. We'll look deeper into the app as the day goes by and will write a new post for tomorrow morning.

The Daily was introduced into a super charged news environment as events in Egypt spiraled out of control. Major news organizations will have to put The Daily back into its business and technologies sections as they grapples with quickly developing stories coming out of the Middle East.
The event at the Guggenheim Museuam was kicked off by News Corp.'s head Rupert Murdoch. After a short speech the stage was taken over by Jon Miller, digital chief officer at News Corp., Jesse Angelo, who will serve as The Daily's executive editor, and Greg Clayman, who will head business operations as publisher.

"I'm convinced that in the tablet era there is room for a fresh voice," Murdoch said. "New times demand new journalism. Simply put, the iPad demands that we completely reinterpret our craft," Murdoch told the press gathered for the event.
Also at the event was Eddy Cue, Apple's VP of Internet Services, and head of all things related to the iTunes store. He was stepping in for Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO, who recently announced was heading to a second health related leave of absence.

Although the News Corp. team made clear that they would create different versions of The Daily for the new Android and other platform tablets that will be announced, Murdoch said that "This year and maybe next year belongs to Apple."