Tag Archives: ipad apps

Channel 4 News to launch iPhone and iPad app

Channel 4 News is to launch a new iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch app on Friday. Developers are currently working on an Android version.

The free app allows users to watch catch-up videos for seven days. Content can be accessed via a 3G or wifi connection and can be viewed when devices are offline.

You can see Jon Snow promoting the app in this video:

According to a release, the new app will carry the most popular website features – including Jon Snow’s daily Snowblog.

The app will allow users to access the latest top domestic and international news stories, plus the most important news from the worlds of politics, science and technology, business and culture from the Channel 4 News team of correspondents and reporters; all the Channel 4 News blogs, including Cathy Newman’s FactCheck and the World News Blog; special reports and galleries (iPad only); and to watch video of the last seven days from the Channel 4 News at 7pm and noon programmes.

The app will allow users to share all of this content through social media and email.

Paywall rises on FT’s ‘flexible’ iPad and iPhone web app

The Financial Times paywall will go up on its new web-based app this week, which has so far reported encouraging stats with 150,000 hits during the first 10 days, during which time users have not been required to login.

“We’re seeing a strong conversion from the existing subscriber base who are using the iPad app and we’re also seeing a large cohort of new users as well,” Steve Pinches, group product manager for FT.com told Journalism.co.uk.

The new web-based iPad and iPhone app was launched on 7 June and is downloaded by the user clicking on the URL app.ft.com. It has received a great deal of attention from media organisations considering investing in native iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry apps.

Advantages of web-based apps include flexibility: HTML5, the language the FT app is written in, has the potential to be used across different devices, reducing the cost and time spent in developing separate apps in different languages. The new web app bypasses Apple’s App Store and therefore avoids the FT losing a 30 per cent cut.

Pinches explained the FT will be prioritising development of the web-based app. Indeed the home screen to the new app states the FT is “encouraging our readers to switch immediately to the new FT web app”.

“It’s not that we are diametrically opposed to being in apps stores. It’s just that it makes a lot more sense for us to develop things in a web-based framework,” Pinches said.

“We have a business model that we’ve spent a lot of time investing in, which we feel is great for users because it gives them access across multiple platforms and whenever we evaluate any channel, we have to make sure it meets the basic criteria for us to be able to run our business as we do.”

As the web app can be used by both iPhones and iPads, it is easier to maintain than two separate natives. It also offers various new features for iPhone users, including video and images, which were not available in the native iPhone app.

Asked if there will be a point when they will remove the native from the App Store, Pinches said: “We’re still in discussions with Apple and that’s being handled by our MD”, and described talks as “amicable”.

Unlike the iPad app which was built by a company in Colorado called Wall Street On Demand, the new app was built by London-based Assanka, which also built the FT’s Android app, predominantly using HTML5.

“They built the Android app, that was their first HTML5 app so it’s been a pretty steep learning curve.”

“The next plan is to roll that code out into the big screen Android, the small screen Android, the [BlackBerry] PlayBook and webOS,” Pinches said.

That may manifest itself as a web-based app compatible with other platforms or more native apps, Pinches explained.

“We always want to keep the two options open: being able to launch as a web app or a native app or both.”

Related content:

FT looks to bypass Apple charges with new web-based iPad app

Nearly half of FT online subscribers accessing content via mobile


Nieman: New data on the Daily suggests social media decline

Joshua Benton at the Nieman Journalism Lab has been analysing the success – or as he believes the decline – of Rupert Murdoch’s iPad only US newspaper, the Daily, by monitoring tweets sent directly from the app.

This post is interesting, not only as an insight into possible problems at the Daily, but for some of the techniques and tools Benton uses for his analysis.

No one outside News Corp. and Apple has a reliable way of knowing how often people read the Daily. But there is one way in which the Daily’s app interacts with the public web — through Twitter sharing. On nearly every page in the app, there’s a sharing button in the top right that allows the reader to share a link to the story on Twitter or other social networks. (A few pages, like the table of contents and user-customized pages, aren’t sharable.)

Benton has used PostRank, a Canadian social media indexing service that analyses how individual web pages are shared through social media.

It’s easy to think of a tweet as just 140 characters, but there’s a lot of metadata around that little snippet of text: when it was tweeted, who tweeted it, how many followers she has, what date she joined Twitter, and more. Amidst all that data is information about where each tweet was generated. Did it come from Twitter’s web interface, or from the official Twitter BlackBerry app, or a third-party app like Echofon or TweetDeck? That’s in there.

And thanks to Twitter’s requirement that app developers register with its API to allow in-app tweeting, that means you can track every time someone tweets from within the Daily.

The data doesn’t look good for the Daily. Its activity on Twitter seems to match my own perceptions of how they’re doing — an early rush of excitement; a decline as people lost interest and the app struggled with technical problems; a plateau once the tech got sorted out; and then another decline once the app started charging users.

Nieman Lab’s full post is at this link.

BBC’s iPlayer iPad app to launch this week

The BBC will launch an iPlayer app for Apple’s iPad this Thursday, the corporation’s interactive operations manager Geoff Marshall has announced on Twitter.

Users can browse the catch-up TV and radio service listings using a 3G connection but will need WiFi to watch or listen to programmes.

It will initially be limited to the UK, although the BBC is working on a subscription-based international version for the iPad that is expected to launch this summer.

Axel Springer blocking browser access to its newspaper on iPad to promote apps

A curious strategy from German publishing group Axel Springer – the publisher is reportedly blocking access to the website of its tabloid Bild from iPad browsers so that users can only access the title by downloading a paid-for app.

Full story on Fox Business via Dow Jones at this link…

Economist launches apps for iPad and iPhone

The Economist has today launched apps for the iPad and iPhone. The apps can be downloaded for free and offer users a weekly sample of articles chosen by the editor.

The full issue of the Economist will be available to purchase through the applications every Thursday evening for £3.49 each week for a single issue.

Digital and print subscribers to the Economist will receive full access to the print edition and website’s content via the apps.

Oscar Grut, managing director of digital editions for the Economist, says in a release that he expects digital downloads to match the title’s print circulation of 1.5 million “in a relatively short period of time”. He hopes the free apps will help attract new readers to the title, who will be encourage to take out subscriptions to the full edition.

Says editor John Micklethwait:

We have reformatted the newspaper to make the most of iPad, iPhone and iPod touch while retaining the familiar feel of the Economist, with all the articles, charts, maps and images from each week’s print edition. And we have integrated our audio edition, read by professional newscasters, for easy switching between reading and listening. We have put a lot of work into making sure that these new versions of the Economist are not just easy to use, but also make our readers feel at home.

How Conde Nast is dealing with iPad advertisers

An interesting post on Rob O’Regan’s blog looking at how Conde Nast has developed best practice guidelines for advertisers who want to work on its iPad apps. To create the guidance for clients, the magazine publisher has been conducting extensive research on how readers are using and rating the apps:

To learn more about these early adopters, Conde Nast is combining its in-app and in-person research with usage software built into its apps. Results from the in-app survey showed that 80 per cent of users who downloaded a Conde Nast digital magazine app said the content and experience “met or surpassed their expectations”, and 83 per cent said they were likely to purchase the next month’s edition.

Full story on emediavitals at this link…

Business Insider: NY Times app platform for publishers could charge $50,000

According to Business Insider, the New York Times latest money-making venture Press Engine could be charging clients up to $50,000 for its services.

Press Engine was launched earlier this month and will charge a one-off licensing fee and monthly maintenance charge to clients, who will use the system to develop iPhone and iPad applications using technology and templates developed by the Times.

Full story on Business Insider at this link…

Ads 10 times more expensive on iPad apps than web, suggests ad group VP

Some interesting stats on the use of iPad apps for Conde Nast titles via an article on Advertising Age. Users are spending an average of more than two hours with its Vanity Fair and GQ apps – double the average time spent with print magazines, according to the metrics.

But perhaps more significant are the estimations made by Adam Kasper, senior vice president of digital innovation for global advertising group Havas Digital, regarding advertising rates on iPad apps. Kaspers suggests that an ad on an iPad app will cost $100 per thousand views – three times as much as a video ad on Hulu and 10 times as much as a banner ad on NYTimes.com.

Audience statistics for iPad applications are still very new and more metrics are needed – but are initial pricing points for advertisers too high for this new outlet?

Times joins forces with Applied Works to create iPad interactives

While many newspaper publishers see the iPad as a place for digital replicas of their print editions, the Times has joined forces with brand-strategy company Applied Works to create a series of interactive graphics for its iPad application.

The video below from Applied Works on Vimeo shows the range of interactives – from a World Cup planner to coverage of the the UK’s emergency budget earlier this year:

Full post on Applied Works’ website at this link…