Browse > Home /

New Sun app comes top in iTunes paid-for news chart

February 16th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Mobile, Online Journalism

A new iPhone application from the Sun has become the most downloaded paid-for news app on the iTunes store this week – in its first week on the market.

The Sun app is currently sitting at number 10 in the overall league table of paid-for applications and is number one in the news category, with the Daily Mash in second.

Downloaders are being lured with an introductory price of 69p for the first month. The price of a monthly subscription rises to £4.99 after the first month.

The app automatically updates throughout the day with breaking news, and also includes live sports results, horoscopes, picture galleries and location-based weather updates.

It is the latest in a range of applications being launched by News International for its daily national titles. The Sun launched an Android application last month and the Times unveiled a web app earlier this week.

Tags: , , ,

Similar posts:

Eight lessons for publishers from comScore’s new report on mobile

October 13th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Mobile

Mobile devices account for nearly 7 per cent of web browsing in the US, according to a new report by comScore.

In the UK it has been predicted that mobile browsing will overtake desktop browsing in 2013.

Although the comScore study is based on US device use, it has lessons for UK publishers as they consider mobile-friendly websites, smartphone and tablet apps and the potential revenue from relatively new products such as iPad magazines.

Here are eight key facts for publishers from the latest comScore study on internet use on mobile devices:

1. Mobile devices account for 7 per cent of US web traffic

Around half of the US population uses the internet on a mobile device, which has increased by almost 20 per cent in the past year.

2. Two thirds of browsing on mobile devices takes place on phones; one third on tablets

Two thirds of the 6.8 per cent of mobile web traffic took place on phones during August; one third of that figure took place on tablets.

3. iPads account for nearly 98 per cent of US tablet market

iPads dominate among tablets in the US, accounting for 97.2 per cent of all web tablet traffic.

4. iPad web browsing has overtaken iPhone browsing

iPads have begun to overtake iPhones in being used for web browsing. iPad browsing accounts for 46.8 per cent of iOS internet use, 42.6 per cent takes place on iPhones.

5. People are increasingly using WiFi for mobile phone web browsing

The study found that more than one third of mobile phone web browsing took place via WiFi in August. Conversely, people are increasingly using tablets, which traditionally required a WiFi connection to access the internet, to connect via mobile broadband. In August, nearly 10 per cent of traffic from tablets occurred via a mobile network connection.

6. Nearly 60% of tablet owners use the devices to consume news

Three out of five tablet owners consume news on their tablets.

7. A quarter of those who read news on a tablet do so daily

One in four tablet users consume news on a tablet do so on a near-daily basis

8. iPhones and iPads dominate, nearly one third of mobile web users have an Android device and just 5 per cent use a BlackBerry

Apple devices such as the iPhone and iPad accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the mobile web browsing; Google Android just over 30 per cent, BlackBerry RIM just 5 per cent, and other platforms nearly 5 per cent.

In a release, Mark Donovan, senior vice president of mobile at comScore said the findings show an “explosion in digital media consumption”, labelling those in the use of connective devices as “digital omnivores”, consumers who access content through several touchpoints during the course of their daily digital lives.

He said:

In order to meet the needs of these consumers, advertisers and publishers must learn to navigate this new landscape so they develop cross-platform strategies to effectively engage their audiences.

There are 10 facts on the UK mobile market published in June here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Similar posts:

What journalists and publishers need to know about the iPhone 4S and iOS 5

October 5th, 2011 | 3 Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Mobile

There are a three of posts worth reading if you want to work out which features unveiled in yesterday’s Apple announcements are relevant to journalists and the industry.

Poynter has a five things journalists need to know about the new iPhone 4S and iOS 5.

Jeff Sonderman states the five benefits of the iPhone 4S and iOS5 are:

1. A price drop for older models of iPhone;

2. An 8 megapixel camera;

3. Safari reading mode, enabling single-column reading and a ‘save for later’ Instapaper-style feature;

4. NewsStand, a development of interest to newspaper and magazine publishers. The Guardian explains what NewsStand means for publishers in this article written when the feature was announced in June;

5. Twitter integration.

The Next Web last night (Tuesday, October 4) published details of Apple’s US publisher partners for NewsStand. The New York Times, GQ, Wired, National Geographic are all on board, according to this post.

Tags: , , , , ,

Similar posts:

Five tips from a radio journalist who reports solely from an iPhone and iPad

September 28th, 2011 | 3 Comments | Posted by in Handy tools and technology, Mobile

For the past 18 months Neal Augenstein, a reporter with Washington DC’s all news radio station WTOP, has carried out all his field reporting from his iPhone and iPad.

Like many radio reporters Augenstein is also shooting and editing video, taking photos and tweeting from the scene of news stories he covers. All the audio, video, audio, photos and scripts he produces are created and edited on his two devices.

A year and a half in, we spoke to him to find out how he is finding the experience. He said he finds the iPhone more valuable than the iPad and tends to produce his live and pre-recorded audio reports on his phone, but writes scripts on his tablet.

Asked how it has changed his job, Augenstein told Journalism.co.uk:

It’s certainly made things a lot easier for me in terms of being able to put my laptop away and all the heavy equipment such as the cables, microphones, recorders, all the cameras that I was using.

There are some challenges to that, for instance, how do you put an iPhone on a podium for a news conference?

Another hurdle he has had to overcome is how to cope with the iPhone being susceptible to wind noise.

So what are his tips on apps and techniques for this form of reporting?

1. 1st Video – Augenstein uses this video recording and editing app for both his video and audio work. It allows multitrack editing and sharing but those familiar with PC or Mac audio and video editing will need to learn a few new swipes and pinches. Here is Journalism.co.uk’s guide on how to shoot and edit video using this app.

2. Ustream – He uses Ustream for livestreaming video, often in breaking news situations. Other app options for free livestreaming include Bambuser and Qik.

3. Skype is used by Augenstein for live reporting, rather than a phone line. He says he finds Skype “a robust way to communicate for a live report”.

One of our goals is the elimination of cell phone-quality recordings from our broadcasts.

Another recommendation from Augenstein was to take the audio from a live video stream, although you cannot have a two-way interview, between the reporter and studio presenter (although you could perhaps do this if you had two phones, one to livestream from and one to listen to the presenter, or if you have a radio to hear the station output, providing there was no delay in transmission).

4. Camera Plus – The WTOP reporter uses this app, also available for Android and BlackBerry, to tweak and edit photos.

5. Spend wisely. Augenstein uses the iPhone’s built in microphone.

There are ways you can plug in other microphones but my goal is trying to minimise the amount of accessories that I need.

As for setting up shots, Augenstein has got a Gorilla iPhone tripod, but opts for handheld shooting for video.

As a radio station our video does tend to be rather rudimentary. Getting a steady shot is important but our web videos are generally not produced, voicetracked packages. What we’re trying to do is work on the synergy between the on air product and the website and the social. If the radio report has sound bites of a person speaking, the website and the video is supposed to complement rather than duplicate what is in the report.

He has looked into the services provided by two companies, Tieline and Comrex, which allow you to broadcast live from a phone. Both options require relatively expensive kit to allow the audio to input via a channel on the radio mixing desk.

I have found, unfortunately, to this point that getting a good connection is difficult. Wifi is always a better-sounding connection than 3G or 4G and in breaking news situations you often don’t have optimal situations.

Since he locked away his cables, cameras and microphones in February 2010, Augenstein has seen his report turn around time decrease.

What used to take 30 minutes to create a fully-produced report I can now do in 10 minutes.

The sound quality is probably is only 92 per cent as good as broadcast-quality equipment, that’s the number I’ve been estimating, but as it can be tweaked and goes through processing at the radio station, people really can’t tell the difference.

And the most beneficial part of his 18-month iPhone and iPad trial?

It’s a chance to re-think the newsgathering process, which to me is the most exciting part about it.

  • Sign up to attend Journalism.co.uk’s one-day training course in using a mobile for reporting, which is being held in London on 4 November 2011.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Similar posts:

Facebook to take on BBM and Google+ with new phone messaging app

Facebook is launching a messaging app to rival the BBM instant messaging service available on Blackberry phones and elements of Google+.

The app will allow groups of friends or contacts (think Google+ circles) to be able to message one another from an iPhone or Android phone. Messages will then be saved and appear in your Facebook inbox.

According to a post on the Facebook blog:

Messenger is a separate app, so it only takes one click to get to your messages or send a new one. Messages are delivered through notifications and texts, so your friends are more likely to get them right away.

The Messenger app is an extension of Facebook messages, so all your conversations are in one place, including your texts, chats, emails and messages. Whether you’re on your phone or on the web, you can see the full history of all your messages.

Messenger will be available for both iPhone and Android starting today. Just search for “Facebook Messenger” in your phone’s app store, or get a link to the app texted to your phone.

Facebook’s full blog post is at this link.

Tags: , , ,

Similar posts:

Ofcom report: 30 stats on smartphones and internet use

August 4th, 2011 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Advertising, Mobile

Ofcom today (4 August) released its TV, radio, broadband, telecoms and mobile industries report, noting significant changes over the “digital decade” since 2001.

Here is the 341 page Communications Market Report boiled down to a list of 30 facts and figures that are relevant to publishers.

Smartphones

1. More than a quarter of adults (27 per cent) own a smartphone;

2. Almost half of teenagers (47 per cent) own a smartphone;

3. Nine out of 10 people (91 per cent) own a mobile phone;

4. Three in 10 mobile phones are smartphones;

5. Most people with smartphones (59 per cent) acquired their device in the past year.

Internet use

6. More than a quarter of people use their mobile phones for internet access. In the first quarter (Q1) of 2011, 28 per cent of UK adults claimed to do so;

7. Those aged 16-24 are more than 10 times more likely to go online via a mobile than those aged 55+;

8. More than three quarters (76 per cent) of homes are now connected to the internet;

9. For the first time household internet take-up (78 per cent) exceeded computer ownership (77 per cent) as a small proportion of households went online using mobile phones only;

10. More than two-thirds (67 per cent) of households have a fixed broadband connection and 17 per cent have a mobile broadband (dongle) connection. In Q1 2011, 26 per cent of over-75s had home internet access, as did 55 per cent of 64-74 year-olds;

11. Consumers use a wide range of devices to access the internet at home. In 2010, 69 per cent said they accessed the internet at home via a laptop or PC, 31 per cent via a mobile phone;

12. Wifi routers were used by 75 per cent of broadband using households in Q1 2011;

13. More than half of all UK households are passed by super-fast broadband;

14. Google has more than three times the user base of any other search engine;

15. The leading blogging site is Google’s Blogger, which reached 8.2 million users in April 2011.

Facebook and other social networking

16. Social networking accounts for more than a fifth of all time spent on the internet;

17. People spend more than five times as much time on Facebook than on any other site;

18. More than 90 per cent of social networking time is spent on Facebook;

19. The most popular claimed use of the internet on mobile phones was social networking services (used by 57 per cent of mobile phone internet users);

20. Mobile users of Facebook spent an average of 5.6 hours on the site in December 2010 (11 minutes a day);

21. In Q1 2011, 46 per cent of UK adults claimed to use social networking services on a home internet connection. There are signs that the growth of social networking may be reaching saturation point: total time spent on social networking sites was just 1.3 per cent higher in April 2011 than in April 2010.

Smartphone brands

22. The Apple iPhone is the most popular brand of smartphone, but BlackBerry handsets are a favourite choice among younger consumers;

23. Apple’s iPhone has a 32 per cent share among adults. This is the brand of choice among ABC1s (37 per cent) and is even higher among ABs alone (44 per cent). But BlackBerry handsets have also taken a significant share of the market (24 per cent) and are particularly popular among younger adults and teens (37 per cent each).

Advertising and commercial

24. More than a quarter of all UK advertising spend is on the internet. Advertising spend on the internet grew by 16 per cent in 2010, to more than £4 billion, accounting for 26 per cent of total advertising spend in the UK, marginally ahead of television;

25. Mobile advertising increased by 121 per cent in 2010 to reach £83 million;

26. In 2010, the mobile advertising market was only 2 per cent the size of the internet ad market. However, driven by increasing use of internet services on mobile phones, together with more sophisticated business models (for example, fully or partially advertising-funded mobile applications), mobile advertising revenue more than doubled during 2010. Search-based advertising increased by the greatest amount (172 per cent) and increased its share of mobile advertising from 54 per cent to 66 per cent;

27. Nearly three-quarters of internet users shop online. Visitors to coupon and reward sites increased by 25 per cent in the year to April 2011, when nearly 40 per cent of internet users visited at least one such site.

Apps

28. Just under half (47 per cent) of adult smartphone users have ever downloaded an app, with one in five (20 per cent) doing so regularly;

29. Regular apps downloaders are skewed male and age 25-34. Just over half (54 per cent) of apps downloaders have paid for an app – with their mean average maximum spend on a single app being £3 – £3.99;

30. Apps downloading is higher among teens than adults; around two-thirds (63 per cent) of teen smartphone users have ever downloaded an app, with one in four (28 per cent) doing so regularly. Six in ten (60 per cent) have paid for an app. The average maximum amount of spend among teens is £3.70 and the median is £3 – £3.99.

See a further 10 facts on mobile media.

All graphs taken from the Ofcom report.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Similar posts:

Analytics to help news sites understand the mobile audience

June 27th, 2011 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Mobile, Traffic

News organisations can now have a better understanding of their audience by analysing stats on visitor numbers by mobile device, including iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android and BlackBerry, and see photos of handsets they are less familiar with.

Google Analytics has added a new mobile section to provide audience data by operating system, service provider, connection speed and browser type; sites can see which country, town or city their mobile readers are in, plus they can look up traffic sources, landing pages and other information familiar to Google Analytics users.

 

Mobile is becoming an increasingly important source of traffic for news sites, with mobile browsing expected to overtake desktop browsing by 2013. It is therefore essential that news sites understand their audience and test out their site on all devices.

Google Analytics users can see what proportion of total web visits mobile makes up by clicking on visitors > mobile. You will need to ensure you are using the latest version of Google Analytics.

There are further details of the updates on the Google Analytics blog.

Related content:

Economist reveals download numbers for iPhone and iPad apps

Guardian appoints first dedicated mobile editor

Nearly half of FT online subscribers access content via mobile

 

 

Tags: , , , ,

Similar posts:

News organisations are increasingly using SoundCloud, says founder

SoundCloud has clocked up an impressive five million users, with four million of those joining within the past year.

Although born out of the founders’ love of music and created to visualise and reference sound, it is seeing a growth in popularity among journalists.

There are no statistics available to document how many SoundCloud recordings are categorised as ‘news’, but speaking via Skype from his base in Berlin, Alexander Ljung, CEO and founder of SoundCloud, told Journalism.co.uk the number of spoken word recordings is increasing.

It’s a big trend at the moment in that we are seeing non-music content growing very fast.

What is SoundCloud?

SoundCloud allows users to upload audio or record directly from the SoundCloud website, or from its desktop, iPhone or Android app. The really powerful thing about it is the ability to add comments at particular points on the audio waveform and allow others to share their views, too.

For example, I can add a comment to the waveform below at the point where Ljung starts talking about major news organisations using SoundCloud. I can also include a link within the comment to take listeners straight to the app and you can also add comments using your Twitter or Facebook account.

Other big advantages for journalists include being able to embed the SoundCloud recording on a news website, download an mp3 for editing, and engaging with the now vast SoundCloud community. See the report here for five ideas on how journalists can use SoundCloud.

Alexander Jung, founder and CEO of SoundCloud by journalismnews

SoundCloud has been around since 2008, after Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss came up with the idea in response to their need to discuss their own music and sound files, Ljung said.

I was previously a sound designer for film and tv. I was always working a lot with sound effects, voiceovers, things like that, and Eric’s music is also very detailed.

Eric and I felt it’s very difficult to talk about sound through email because it’s a non-visual thing and therefore it’s hard to reference it. We wanted to first visualise the sound and then put comments in to make it easier to collaborate.

Although SoundCloud started with music in mind, it was hoped it would go beyond, and it has done so, both in terms of music-related spoken content and journalism.

Since the launch of the apps, we’ve seen a lot of bands posting interviews from their tours and almost using it like Twitter and just sharing audio with the world.

We’re also starting to see more and more traditional news organisations like France 24 or 77WABC Radio putting up programming. There has also been some stuff by ESPN on the sports side.

Ljung told Journalism.co.uk that he also a big fan of the Next Web’s Daily Dose, a round-up of the tech news from the previous day.

They came up with this really nice format. I get that in my dashboard once a day it’s been really successful.

It is perhaps not surprising that Ljung favours the SoundCloud experience to listening to podcasts, a format he called “broken” in a recent interview in the Telegraph.

Podcasting is alive and great but the system for it at the moment is a bit broken. If you think about how we consume content today, like YouTube videos, we want to have them streamed, on demand, embeddable.

If you have a widget like [YouTube or SoundCloud] it lends itself to a lot of social interaction. When you look at the traditional podcasting system it’s all about subscribing to a feed, downloading, syncing, and there is no social interaction around it.

Even though the system is broken, there’s a huge demand for that kind of stuff out there that people are willing to jump though hoops to experience it.

I think [SoundCloud] has a chance to really bring back podcasting and that kind of publishing back into the spotlight again.”

His argument is that choosing SoundCloud over traditional podcasting methods makes audio “so much more accessible to people in the way that they want to consume it”.

But one problem with SoundCloud is it relies on Flash-based widgets, both for recording and for consuming audio, and Apple products such as the iPhone and the iPad do not support Flash (so apologies for those reading this story in the Journalism.co.uk iPhone app as you cannot see the embedded SoundCloud wave file above).

Although our website is built in HTML5, our widgets are currently Flash only as we haven’t felt the technology is ready for it. As soon as we can do it in a different way, we will.

SoundCloud developers have been working on a non-Flash option for viewing SoundCloud widgets for some time. “It probably won’t be that long before that works,” he said, but was unable to commit to a timescale beyond that a solution would be available “quite soon”.

However, there is an option for developers to build their own SoundCloud apps using the developers toolset or to make sites suitable for devices that do not support Flash, such as the iPad.

We also have a full, open API and different code snippets that we’ve open sourced and made free to be able to integrate that into your application. So if you’re building an iPhone app then you can use SoundCloud right away or if you’re building a website you can build your own JavaScript or iPhone-based widgets.

And developers have been making the most of the open API. SoundCloud Labs showcases various third-party apps and experiments.

One that has potential uses for journalists is SoundCloud Importer which allows you to record and display a phone interview on SoundCloud. At the time of writing the UK telephone number does not work, however. The options of importing audio via email and converting audio already online to SoundCloud do work and offer further possibilities.

Even if there are still obstacles in displaying SoundCloud widgets on Apple devices – and this may discourage you to embed SoundCloud files – remember there is a five million-strong community to engage with and it is not a bad idea for journalists to be adding audio to SoundCloud as a matter of course.

Here are five nifty ideas for journalists using SoundCloud.

Tags: , , ,

Similar posts:

Guardian reveals iPhone app figures with more than 400,000 downloads

June 10th, 2011 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Mobile, Traffic

The Guardian today revealed figures for its iPhone app for the first time since its launch in January this year – showing a download total of more than 400,000 times globally.

According to figures from the Guardian a total of 67,258 users have gone on to subscribe to the app, which is available to download for free, but requires subscription for further reading of content. The cost of subscription is £2.99 for six months or £3.99 a year.

In the US – where the Guardian is due to launch its new digital operation later this year and there is no subscription charge for the app – it has been downloaded 36,089 times.

Today’s figures are also said to show that traffic to Guardian.co.uk via its mobile site has more than doubled on the same time last year, from 4.5 per cent to more than 10 per cent.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Similar posts:

New tool provides optional upload of iPhone location data

The Research and Development Group at the New York Times Company has released a tool to allow iPhone users to upload their location data. The information – which is anonymous – will then be available to groups who apply to access the data.

Explanations here and here on the openpaths.cc website state:

This data represents a unique opportunity to help solve some of the world’s toughest problems. We believe you should have the option of donating your data in an open, secure fashion, while maintaining control of your information and where it goes.

Research requests are received from any and all projects – public, private, commercial, academic, artistic, or governmental. Requests typically look at specific geographical areas or demographic information about their subjects, so research requests include these criteria. Based on this information, users receive monthly updates that list the projects where their data is a good fit, and are offered the opportunity to donate their data.

In return, we ask researchers to provide a small benefit to their data donors. This might be a custom visualization of a donor’s location information, access to the results of the research, or other related benefits.

When researchers revealed that iPhones had been recording location data, concerns were raised about privacy.

As explained in this article in the Guardian:

Security researchers discovered that Apple‘s iPhone keeps track of where you go – and saves every detail of it to a secret file on the device which is then copied to the owner’s computer when the two are synchronised.

The file contains the latitude and longitude of the phone’s recorded coordinates along with a timestamp, meaning that anyone who stole the phone or the computer could discover details about the owner’s movements using a simple program.

For some phones, there could be almost a year’s worth of data stored, as the recording of data seems to have started with Apple’s iOS 4 update to the phone’s operating system, released in June 2010.

Apple has now released a software update 4.3.3 to fix this. Anyone who wants to make their data available should hold off installing it.

Tags: , ,

Similar posts:

© Mousetrap Media Ltd. Theme: modified version of Statement