Apple plans to expand the appeal of its News app by letting publishers have full length articles available exclusively to their paying subscribers, reports Reuters. Currently the said option is not possible. Up until now, publishers can only offer free articles and small “previews” that point to a paywall login.
This latest move by Apple will help differentiate the Cupertino company’s News app from Facebook’s Instant Articles news app which does not offer a subscriber only content. It could also help boost the tech company as it continues to distinguish itself from the growing number of online news apps available.
By having paid content available through Apple News, the Cupertino company is giving publishers a way to maintain relationships with their readers and in the process, score new subscribers as well. It is unclear how the tech company plans to authenticate subscribers or if it would take a percentage from the payments of the readers who became subscribers through the said app.
Subscriber only publications who work with Apple News are now given the option to share their articles for free or just share excerpts of articles and direct readers to log on to their own websites for the rest of the article. However, publishers are frustrated with the lack of information they receive from the Apple about their content readers.
According to Dow Jones chief customer officer Katie Vanneck Smith, ensuring subscription mechanisms in their off-platform distribution partnerships is critical; Dow Jones is working with Apple and others to take advantage of new platforms. Smith however declined to say anything about the specifics of their conversation with the tech giant.
The move was reported a few weeks after Apple has announced that it would be stepping away from its iAd advertising sales business and moving to an automated platform that will let publishers keep 100 percent of their earned revenue.
According to The Verge, Apple News was originally released in September and by October, Apple executive Eddy Cue has revealed that over 40 million people have already tried the said News app. As of this month it has been reported that the company has worked with more than 100 publishers.
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