Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Morning Brief: Publishers continue to clean up their apps prior to the holiday; NYT updates add in live election results in preparation for the primaries; local markets contemplate the sale of their NYT-owned newspapers

Publishers and developers continued to use the week before the Christmas holiday weekend to issue updates to their media apps at a furious pace.

Today Future PLC issued updates for 64 apps, somehow Linus Format's update slipped into the store earlier. All the updates say that they are adding iOS 5 support so that the owners tablet or mobile device will no longer delete issues when space becomes low.

The updates also improve the reading experience by having the magazines leave off where the reader ended reading them, rather than return to the cover; and the library now shows the issue size when the reader edits their issues to clear space – all good features.

Now, if only someone at Future could improve these app icons – yuck.

The New York Times issued updates for its iOS upps, adding in live election night voting results in anticipation for the primary season (The Iowa caucuses are on January 3.)

The Android app, NYTimes app for tablet, was last updated in June, so an update should be expected for that app very soon, as well.

Zinio also updated its universal app, fixing crashing bugs (it hopes). The app description says that this will be the last app update that will support iOS 3.

One wonders who it is that might still be on iOS 3. My guess would be those who own an iPhone but treat it like an old flip phone, rarely if ever running apps other than the phone app itself.

Another candidate would be those, like my in my family, who still use the original iPhone, as well as the iPhone 3G and 3Gs, as converted iPod touches. I use an old iPhone as a music streamer and alarm clock. My daughter still has my original iPhone which she uses to listen to music.

The news that The New York Times Company is planning to sell off their regional newspapers is sinking in where the company owns papers. In the Bay Area, the Chronicle (still owned by Hearst) reported on the sale news, mentioning that a sale would effect the Santa Rosa Press Democrat and the weeklies North Bay Business Journal and Petaluma Argus-Courier.

The Boston Herald couldn't help themselves, asking when the Boston Globe might be sold off, as well.

No one really has anything original to say, it appears, simply rehashing the financial results for the past few years – without, of course, mentioning their own paper's results over the same period of time.

It is an odd thing about the newspaper business: journalists lament the passing or sale of a newspaper after it occurs, but relish planting knives before the actual event.