Saturday, April 3, 2010

Is the future of news here?

Further to my post a while ago on the future of news, today it arrived. I went down to the Apple store and picked up an iPad. The store was crowded, but they still had the 32GB and 64GB in stock. I went before 3pm, because at 3pm they were going to put back into stock machines that had been reserved but not picked up, but this did not matter.

Anyway, I have been playing with it, and in particular I wanted to see the Wall Street Journal app. The video above gives you a good sense of it. I find it very slick. It looks like a paper, but with the convenience of an electronic device in terms of navigation, emailing and saving articles. You can download into the device up to 7 days of the whole paper (hmm...what else to call it) for reading if you are offline. It works well in portrait or landscape mode.

The ads are unobtrusive for now, and the ads themselves are much more interesting because they can be interactive. It will be interesting to see how these monetize for the WSJ. Of course, since they are charging $18/mo, that will help the business model.

[Update: The app is slow to get going. Once you open it, you have to wait for 10-15 seconds while it loads the latest edition before you can do anything. That should be fixed.]

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