Murdoch launches iPad newspaper The Daily

Feb 2, 2011
Jonathan Harwood

The digital News Corp venture is designed for the iPad but has a traditional print feel

Rupert Murdoch has unveiled his latest venture - a digital newspaper for the iPad, called The Daily, which has been developed in conjunction with Apple. The much-anticipated launch at the Guggenheim Museum in New York had originally been planned for last month, but was put back because of teething problems with technology and Steve Jobs's illness.
The digital newspaper, which has a team of 100 journalists working on it, will be delivered to iPad subscribers automatically every morning. The app is available from the iTunes store.
Some see it as the latest effort by Murdoch, who has already started erecting paywalls around his newpsaper websites, to find a niche for the traditional paid-for newspaper model in the internet age, where most people expect their content for free.
The Daily has a very newspaper-like feel. Each edition will consist of six sections and appears daily in time for breakfast. Although the product will have its own website, it is expected to feature only a small percentage of the content that subscribers see on their iPads.
The operation also generates its own content, thanks to its not inconsiderable staff, bucking the modern trend towards news aggregation and content filtering at digital news operations.
Although the premise sounds traditional (there are puzzles and sudoku in addition to the news) much of the content will feature interactive graphics and videos - and subscribers can listen to, rather than read, stories. It also links to other parts of the web and includes features like celebrity twiter feeds.

The editorial tone is said to be that of an upmarket tabloid and it has even been compared to the Daily Prophet, the paper read in the Harry Potter books.
The Daily is designed to make the iPad even more attractive to newspaper and magazine readers, and since news of its launch emerged last year other newspapers, including those already owned by News Corp like the Sunday Times, have been scrambling to improve their iPad offering.

The New York Times has even launched a rival app called which works by filtering news stories from sites that its readers already visit. It also gives access to premium content from the New York Times and links up to social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. 

Although The Daily is primarily a News Corp venture it has the backing of Apple, and the company launched its new 'push' subscription feature at the same time. This feature allows iTunes to renew subscriptions automatically and bill customers on a weekly or monthly basis.

Steve Jobs's place at today's launch was taken by Eddy Cue, Apple's vice president of internet services, and therefore responsible for iTunes.

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