News Corp.’s The Daily, one of the first high-profile tablet magazines that launched exclusively on Apple’s iPad in early 2011, is shutting down, according to AllThingsD. The media corporation announced Monday that it will “cease standalone publication” of the app on Saturday, December 15.
The Daily first launched February 2, 2011 to much fanfare at a media event in New York City featuring Apple’s SVP of Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue. One of the first of its kind at launch, The Daily coupled a free iPad app with a subscription daily newspaper delivered directly to the app. The service’s content was geared toward digital reading, with interactive charts, photo slideshows, and embedded video and audio.
Despite its pioneering features, the service was met with mediocre reviews and never gained traction. The situation worsened in September 2011 when Apple launched its Newsstand service as part of iOS 5, enabling other newspapers and magazines to easily transition to digital distribution on the iPad.
Initial rumors of The Daily’s demise began to surface in July 2012, when competitor The New York Daily reported on rumors from within News Corp. that the service had been “put on watch” to be cut as part of a major restructuring at the media giant. Shortly after those rumors hit, News Corp. cut a third of The Daily’s staff.
Now, with today’s announcement, the final nail has been struck. “From its launch, The Daily was a bold experiment in digital publishing and an amazing vehicle for innovation. Unfortunately, our experience was that we could not find a large enough audience quickly enough to convince us the business model was sustainable in the long-term. Therefore we will take the very best of what we have learned at The Daily and apply it to all our properties,” Rupert Murdoch, Chairman and CEO of News Corp. explained in a press release announcing the company’s decision.