Monday, October 17, 2011

Morning Brief: The Economist releases app update that has users furious; Citigroup having troubles finding buyer for EMI Group; Donnelley and AMI expand relationship

The introduction to iOS 5 did not go very smoothly as Apple's servers suffered some stress, but in the end most iOS device users were able to finally complete their system updates.

Publishers and developers were also busy submitting updates for their apps to make them iOS 5 compliant. One app that was released late last week has their readers none too pleased.

The Economist for iPad admits to at least some of the problems:
Dear Reader,
This is an interim iOS 5 compatibly app update. If you have updated to iOS 5 this is a necessary update to allow you to continue enjoying The Economist. However, you may encounter some temporary functional issues that we are still working on. A more complete compatibility update will be coming shortly and we thank you for your patience.
 Temporary iOS 5 issues:
 Along with some cosmetic irregularities, Twitter-sharing has been disabled.
- The Digital Editions team
But some readers have also complained that the have lost their past issues, or can not log into their accounts. The "issues" the app has are a result of iOS 5 forcing The Economist to comply with Apple's in-app subscription policies. Now that Apple has introduced Newsstand look for The Economist to update its app so that it uses Apple's system.

The New York Times has a report this morning on Citigroup's efforts to see off EMI Group, one of the three big music companies that dominate the industry.

The story by Ben Sisario quotes Ben Rumley, a media analyst with Enders Analysis, as stating that the timing of the sale is not the best. Everything you read in the news indicates that it is difficult to raise financing for any business, let alone music. It’s not the greatest time to be looking for debt financing,” Rumley states.

The story says that Citigroup was looking for bids in the $4 billion range but have only received offers from Sony and BMG Rights Management that are half that amount.

R.R. Donnelley announced this morning that it has landed a big fish: American Media Inc., publisher of such titles as the National Enquirer, Shape, Men's Fitness, Muscle & Fitness, Natural Health, Star and OK!, will be expand its relationship further, raising its contract to $55 million in services.

Donnelley will be provide premedia, production and printing services, and the announcement hints at some digital services, as well.

We are very proud to continue this expanding relationship. The platform that we have built offers exceptional flexibility, with offset, gravure and variable digital printing and a host of related services," John Paloian, RR Donnelley's Chief Operating Officer stated. "More than that, it offers the resources to help take our customers to the future of content creation, management and delivery, with capabilities for faster electronic composition, custom publications, e-delivery, multi-channel marketing and revenue enhancement."