Twitter data suggests News Corp.’s The Daily iPad news app is losing audience

“Some of the most interesting work in the future of news is happening in these apps — for instance, in The Daily, which is trying to both create an iPad-native experience and get people to pay 99 cents a week for it,” Joshua Benton reports for The Nieman Journalism Lab. “Information about The Daily’s success (or lack thereof) has been hard to come by; external guesstimates have gotten ‘no comments,’ and the closest thing to a hard number to come out of The Daily so far is its publisher’s statement that the app has been downloaded ‘hundreds of thousands’ of times.”

“So I set out to see if there was some way to use publicly available data to try to understand at The Daily’s readership,” Benton reports. “If I can’t know how many readers it has, perhaps I could find something that at least showed the broader trend line.”

Benton reports, “That’s how, with major help from the social media firm PostRank, I came up with the chart above, which suggests — at least when viewed through the lens of Twitter sharing — The Daily is losing audience over time rather than gaining it.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The Daily is losing audience because it’s a pain in the ass to read. It’s always been that way and it hasn’t improved rapidly enough. We do not want to be forced to learn several new paradigms for accessing content. We just want to read/view/watch/listen to the news. You can’t find anything painlessly in The Daily, so we stopped bothering. Also from News Corp., the “less ambitious” NY Post app for iPad is far better; it’s navigable without having to screw around pinching and swiping and tapping assorted crap, much of it hidden. Launch the NY Post app and you get their version of the news; that’s all we want.

We don’t want stupid UI puzzles, we just want the effing news!

The Daily needs to remove (or hide) the bells and whistles, open on the Table of Contents (or just copy The NY Post app) and KISS. Then we might consider launching The Daily on our iPads again. Maybe.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]


  1. …and i thought Murdoch was the chief architect of taking complex, nuanced issues and making them into simple black & white ideological battles. Turns out when given a technology to make things easy, News Corp couldn’t just present their simpleton agenda in a straightforward manner.

    I echo the earlier comments about the Financial Times. Ever since Murdoch ruined the WSJ, the FT and the Economist have become our key business publications.

  2. I have now done the yearly subscription as I am very happy with it. It really is more of a magazine than a newspaper, and I personally like the interface.

    It will continue to evolve, and has already gotten better. If not, they’ll have to abandon it.

    I understand many gave up on it as initially it didn’t function very well at all. But there have been improvements. Navigation is now faster, initial download time has been reduced, and the content seems to be getting better.

    I’ve spent $40 on far worse things, so I guess we’ll see what happens with it over time….

  3. I downloaded the app. I “read” it four or five times and then I deleted it from my iPad. Reason: NO CONTENT!!! Its supposed to be News? There are only ever 4 news items!!!! The rest is gossip. Perhaps it is aimed at teens… Anyway, its crap and its gone from my iPad…

  4. I like The Daily enough, at least for now, to put up with it’s flaws. The news is light, sure, but it never advertised itself as hard news. They are trying some interesting things with audio and video content, have run a few nice features, and have a decent sports page.

    It’s worth the pittance they’re asking for me to see what they can do with the format. Good on ’em.

  5. i must say i find it funny that people say theres more gossip than news. i find its exactly like a newspaper but with better features. all newspapers have a news section, a entertainment section sports and so on. The daily has all that and the gossip section is usually shorter than the rest. for those complaining of crosswords, well, all newspapers have them, every day. The daily is a great newspaper, minus the few glitches. its a shame people on these comments seems to be talking of an app, they have never gone through from start to finish. before commenting, actually read the paper first

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