Major Australian media companies invest in ‘wild west’ of Apple iPad apps

“The ‘wild west’ is how one Australian iPad user describes the new media frontier. Apple has left newspapers and magazines to decide what they want to do with content, layout, fees and advertising, and each is trying something different,” Peter Munro reports for The Age. “Each organisation is excited about the new tablet computer, but none dare pretend to know what might work.”

“Fairfax Media, owner of The Sunday Age, is one of the first major Australian media companies to market, with iPad apps for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald expected soon,” Munro reports. “A complete version of the printed newspaper, initially offered free and including all sections, will be delivered digitally to iPads about 2am each day. Age editor-in-chief Paul Ramadge, says e-reader devices, led by the iPad, could become the ascendant platform for news. ‘I do think that there is a generation or more growing up that is not paper literate, they are screens people, and I think this will appeal to them.'”

Munro reports, “The newspaper plans to track time spent by readers of its iPad app on particular articles or sections. Fairfax is also confident downloads of the app will count towards newspaper circulation in a ‘reasonably short time,’ Mr Ramadge says.”

Munro reports, “The Age app will move to a paid subscription model eventually. Monthly magazine Sport & Style will be sold as a separate iPad app, for $3.49 an issue from next month. The Australian, published by News Ltd, has already released its app, for an introductory offer of $4.99 a month, substantially cheaper than a print subscription.. Each media organisation faces the dilemma of the unknown. Will readers embrace the new technology? Will advertisers pay more for this format? The Australian, which says it has sold out three months of ads on its app, was the second most popular paid iPad app on Apple’s iTunes store yesterday.”

Full article here.


  1. Got my iPad on friday and spent some time sorting out what I want to keep after Syncing all my previous iPhone apps. Still waiting to be wowed by ebooks and the childrens section has a ways to go although the on free comic in Digicomics looks terrific but waiting for a pinch of animation. Was disapointed after downloading the APC app (Australian Personal Computer magazine) to find they want to charge $8.99. So I will wait for a more seasonable priced computer mag under $5. Mac Daily News is or RSS Appleinsider is great but hope these organizations get a leg up and get a real emag out. Good luck and may the best app win!

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