Apple News gets extended formatting options for creators, refreshed tutorial

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In its ongoing effort to improve Apple News, the company has rolled out a series of changes which extends formatting options for publishers and adds a new ad size for the iPhone and iPod touch, in conjunction with a new tutorial to assist with the new features.

The Apple News Format now includes list item style, including bullets, numbers, letters, roman numerals, and custom characters in HTML formatted lists. Also added on Thursday, medium rectangle advertisement components previously limited to the iPad can now be automatically inserted into Apple News Format articles viewed on the iPhone and the iPod touch.

The new tutorial for Apple News shows users how to create content for the service using JSON.

Changes to Apple News publishing have been gradual throughout 2016, the biggest development being the opening up of its publishing tools for all content producers, and not just a select few, in March.

The largest change for readers was the Apple News redesign in iOS 10, first shown at the 2016 WWDC, emphasizes individual stories and breaks articles into clear sections, including Top Stories, Trending, and topics based on the user's preference. In a new element, the app also creates new topics based on readers' histories.

Featured stories are selected and presented to users, similarly to Editor's Picks in Google News. iOS 10 also introduced subscriptions, allowing users to read entire issues of publications.