Can a Newspaper Thrive on iPad?

Susan Hall
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Business Apps for iPad

The iPad is receiving a warm welcome from developers and business users.

The story that has me messaging my out-of-work journalist friends today concerns News Corp.'s plans for a daily newspaper on the iPad. You don't see that many stories these days with the words "hiring journalists," but according to TechCrunch, the venture will require 100 journalists working with engineers on loan from Apple. (The story doesn't say how many engineers.)


With application development such a hot area right now, the venture could provide good jobs for both.


There are a lot of questions about whether such a thing could work. According to The New York Times, the paper would be "printed" once daily, with an unspecified number of updates, unlike news websites that are updated around the clock. And it will have no links, either inbound or outbound to other sites.


Desire Athow, writing at ITProPortal, notes the newspaper, called The Daily, would not be indexed by Google and will rely solely on Apple for its success. But he notes that a lot of apps thrive though they are pushed solely on iTunes. And a lot of things Apple gets involved with just turn to gold.


So could such an idea make money when readers generally won't pay for content? Writes the Times' David Carr:

When I am on a Web browser and I bump into a pay wall, I reflexively pull back unless it is in front of something I really must have. But when I'm in the App Store on an iPad, I'm already in a commercial environment: Pushing the button to spend small money on something I'd like to see or play with doesn't seem like such a sucker's bet.

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