Friday, August 17, 2012

The New Republic updates its iPad edition, digital access is now free for print subscribers

One final note before cutting out for the weekend: The New Republic, which has a new owner and not that long ago lowered its website paywall, this afternoon issued an update to its iPad app.

The only thing mentioned in the "What's New" section is this: Access to this app is now free for TNR print subscribers.

Of course, if you are a print subscriber this is a big deal. I'm sure we will see some of those negative reviews switch to five-star ones – the update is so new now, however, that as I write this there are no new reviews in the U.S. App Store.

The New Republic for iPad is charging $3.99 for a monthly subscription, and $39.99 for an annual subscription. New downloaders get two weeks free.

The app, if you are unfamiliar with it, is a bit of a hybrid in that the content that makes up the app is a combination of the print edition and the website.

The problem with the app, though, is that one must pay to access the website content through the app, but the same content is free when found on the website. So while print subscribers will be very happy with the app update, web users will continue to find the app of no interest versus the website. That, I suppose, is the danger of creating a hybrid paid app.