After months and months of build up, and more than a few pushed back launch dates, Rupert Murdoch’s The Daily arrivedin the US app store this past February. Declared the world’s first iPad newspaper, it feature news articles, interactive graphics, videos and glossy photos designed to work with the iPad’s touchscreen.
A few of you were keen to know how to download The Daily outside of the US. For those of you in the UK, you no longer have to sneak around. The Daily has quietly launched across the pond, seven months after the app made its US debut. It includes the News, Business, Gossip, Fashion Week, Opinion, Apps & Tech and Sports sections, along with Sudoku and crossword puzzles.
According to The Guardian, early App Store reviewers are complaining about the lack of localization. In fact, the current issue includes stories on a fire in Minnesota, Republican party politics, and US home repossessions. The advertisements are also from the US edition, including Fox TV series Terra Nova, the Droid 4G smartphone and a two-week free trial sponsored by Verizon Wireless, which does not have a consumer-facing business in the UK. However, one has to believe that Murdoch has plans to hire local reporters in the UK, as well as partner with local advertisers in the near future.
At its US launch, the media mogul said:
“New times demand new journalism… and a new service edited and designed specifically for new devices. Our challenge is to take the best of traditional journalism…and combine it with the best of contemporary technology. 360 degree photographs, graphics that respond to the touch are unthinkable in either print or television. The iPad demands that we completely re-imagine our craft. There’s a growing segment of the population that is educated and sophisticated that does not read national print or newspapers…and they expect content tailored to their specific interests…What we are losing today are the opportunities for true news discovery. The magic of newspapers lies in their serendipity and surprise and the deft touch of a good editor….Our aim is to inform people, to make them think and make them smile and help them engage in the great issues of the day. We can and we must make the business of news gathering viable again.”
I can’t imagine the UK population wants to hear anything more from Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation after the News of the World scandal earlier this summer. But for Brits who want to read about American politics from Murdoch’s existing team of reporters, The Daily UK will charge £0.69 per day or £27.99 annually, in comparison to $.99 cents per day or $40 per year.
According to The Guardian, The Daily’s app had been downloaded more than 800,000 times since launch, but has generated a loss of around $10m for News Corp in its last financial quarter. Murdoch says he expects The Daily to be on all major tablets, but says “last year, this year and maybe next year belong to iPad.”