New York Times CEO Explains Apple News Decision

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Mark Thompson, president and CEO of The New York Times, explained in an interview his decision not to join the Apple News subscription.

We tend to be quite leery about the idea of almost habituating people to find our journalism somewhere else. We’re also generically worried about our journalism being scrambled in a kind of Magimix (blender) with everyone else’s journalism.

So far Apple hasn’t been able to convince either The New York Times or Washington Post. However, it sounds like the Wall Street Journal will be a player.

Apple News Magazine Subscriptions Heading for macOS

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Appe News Magazines Sub notifications

lt looks like the Apple News subscription service will launch on macOS as well as iOS. Developer Steve Troughton-Smith shared some screenshots of a the new service as they appear in the latest beta of macOS 10.14.4. MacRumors reported that they showed notifications for subscribers when the latest edition of a magazine is released. We are expecting to hear about Apple’s News subscription service at its March 25th “It’s Showtime” event.

The screenshots show notifications from the Apple News subscription service, which will alert subscribers when new issues of their favorite magazines are available. Similar subscription information has also already been seen in iOS 12.2, with the subscription service called “Apple News Magazines.” Apple’s magazine subscription service is based on Texture, the digital magazine app that it purchased in 2018.

Apple News Has Problems But Privacy Isn't One of Them

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Hot takes abound in the wake of a report from DigiDay about how publishers are frustrated with Apple News. One of the cited issues is a lack of user targeting, which is great for users. One problem I see with Apple News is that the rumored News subscription might reward clickbait. But privacy is a big reason why I use Apple News. I can put up with ads, but the less time I spend on publishers’ websites infested with trackers, popups and autoplaying videos, the better. I have my favorite sites I subscribe to, but I do it through Apple News so the companies can’t sell my credit card information.

And while publishers remain frustrated with Apple News as a source of revenue, some said they appreciate where Apple is coming from. “I respect Apple and that they believe in privacy,” one source said. “It just makes it incredibly challenging to sell there.”

How Apple News Affects Publishers

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Great analysis as usual by Ben Thompson. He writes how the Apple News subscription might be good for certain publishers, and bad for others.

To that end, I am sure that a significant number of publications will sign up for Apple’s offering; clearly the company is confident enough to leak a date. And, frankly, many publications should: most publishers are already locked into the volume game when it comes to their editorial direction, and Apple News subscription payouts will be additive to the bottom line.

The main thing that concerns me is how revenue will be driven by clicks. I hope that Apple News doesn’t become a flood of yellow journalism.

Features Coming in iOS 12.2, Like Apple News in Canada

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The first iOS 12.2 developer beta was released today, and we got a sneak peak into the features that will be coming.

Apple today released the first beta of iOS 12.2 for developers, and while it doesn’t bring as many new changes as we might have hoped for in a 12.x update, there are still quite a few minor tweaks to be aware of.

Some updates coming include Apple News for Canadian users, HomeKit TV Support, Safari search arrows, and more.

Apple Hires Condé Nast Exec to Build Apple News

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Apple has hired Liz Schimel, formerly of Condé Nast, to help build Apple News. The Information (via AppleInsider) reported (subscription required) that her new title at Apple is Head of News Business, according to her LinkedIn Profile. She’s a media veteran, and her most recent title was President of Condé Nast’s China business. I personally used to worry that Apple News would be yet another project launched and then forgotten by Apple, but the company is clearly intent on growing the service. I read tons of articles on Apple News every day on iPad and iPhone, and I expect to use it in macOS Mojave when that OS ships later this year. TMO has also seen an increase in traffic on Apple News, and that probably coincides with overall growth in the platform. All of which makes Apple investing in more resources and people to build and promote Apple News make sense.

Apple Hires Condé Nast Exec to Build Apple News