Tuesday, January 25, 2011, 10:35 pm PT (01:35 am ET)
News Corp's 'The Daily' iPad newspaper coming in next two weeks, says Murdoch JrNews Corporation executive James Murdoch, son of founder and media mogul Rupert, said Tuesday that its iPad-exclusive periodical, The Daily, should arrive in the next two weeks.
The Daily, which is to be News Corp's experimental push into digital-only publications, was originally scheduled for a Jan. 19 launch, but was postponed at the last minute. Reports suggested that the delays were due to a new subscription feature for iTunes that Apple has been working on.
"It should be launching in the next two weeks, I hope," Murdoch said Tuesday at the DLD media conference in Munich. Murdoch, who heads up News Corp's European and Asian operations, also confirmed the $.99 per week price, Reuters reports.
It was Murdoch himself who confirmed initial rumors of the iPad-specific newspaper in November of last year.
The Daily would be the latest in News Corp's collection of paid content publications. Last year, the conglomerate put the online editions of The Times of London and News of the World behind paywalls.
At the conference, Murdoch admitted that readership had dropped off significantly as a result, though the response had been positive.
"Sure enough, our audience has contracted dramatically but the engagement of the audience is very strong, our advertisers are happy," he said. According to Murdoch, News Corp will release subscriber numbers for the publications in about six weeks.
When asked whether The Sun will see a similar 'pay to view' strategy, Murdoch described his company as "cautious." Though most of the online newspaper will likely remain free, Murdoch did say, "I would be very confident that there would be a strong paid component in it."
A recent report described major magazine publishers as frustrated by Apple's existing pay-per-issue approach. According to the report, Apple has yet to ink subscription deals with publishers other than News Corp.
Sales figures for iPad editions of major print magazines have been in sharp decline as initial interest has dropped off. Wired magazine, for instance, has seen downloads drop from 100,000 copies in June to 22,000 and 23,000 in October and November, respectively.
Apple has reportedly told several European publishers that they cannot offer free iPad access to paid print subscribers after April 1. By offering free access to existing customers, publishers have been leaving Apple out of its 30 percent cut for App Store transactions.
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