Apple may launch premium Apple News subscriptions in spring, but getting weak publisher re...

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in General Discussion
Apple is reportedly aiming to relaunch Texture as a premium subscription option within Apple News, possibly as soon this spring, but is encountering stiff reactions from publishers.

Texture on iPhone and iPad


Some industry executives are concerned that Apple's service -- which in its current form as Texture, lets people read a wide range of magazines for $9.99 per month -- will rob them of subscribers since Texture/Apple News will be cheaper, according to Bloomberg. One person likened Apple's approach to journalism as loving a toy so much they break it.

An Apple team headed by VP Eddy Cue and former Conde Nast executive Liz Schimel has been meeting with media executives in the past few months to try to convince them otherwise, one source said. The argument is that subscriber growth with Texture/Apple News could actually surpass what publications achieve on their own, and may replicate the success of Apple Music.

Publishers are expected to be paid based on how much time readers spend with their articles. Aesthetically, those articles will take on a conventional online format, rather than the recreation of print Texture currently uses.

Apple is trying to lure prominent newspapers like the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg sources added, backing outside reports.

The Texture buyout was a surprise announcement ahead of Cue's appearance at SXSW in March. Since then Apple has done relatively little with it beyond changing to a flat pricing scheme and shutting down a native Windows app, forcing people to turn to iOS or Android.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    I thought Apple was spending resources ferreting out fake news sources. Why, then, would Bloomberg even be considered?
    gutengel
  • Reply 2 of 18
    The comparison to Apple Music is faulty because Apple actually *likes* music and has made it an important component going all the way back the original iPod. News? Not so much.

    Apple is a dilettante when it comes to news. It's just not that invested in sticking with it, but rather making great noises every six months or so to give the appearance of treating news like it does music. The original Newsstand was good that failed because Apple didn't care about it too much and it withered on the vine. Then we were all supposed to be wowed by Apple News which is just a big RSS feed whose biggest selling point was "how beautiful it looked." If you have an Apple News channel, you still need to use a browser to upload stories. There is no native app on macOS or iOS. Hell, you can't even *schedule* a story being posted. 

    News outlets are right to be wary. Tech companies and news have proven to be oil and water, as you have a generation of young know-nothings who sneer at journalism and print media but insist they have the answer to save both (a topic that is now over a decade old with no end in sight.) And it seems to be eluding people (particularly techie boyz) that journalism is not only hard, but takes resources and goes far beyond mere political punditry. 

    Otherwise, I'm fairly indifferent to Apple News. 
    edited December 2018 dewmespice-boygatorguyphilboogie
  • Reply 3 of 18
    Magazine and news publishers need to make more money to survive, period. So if this format doesn't do that, then it's a waste of time for them. They also can't afford to commit to formats that end up losing them money versus what they already do.
    ravnorodom
  • Reply 4 of 18
    The usual Business week Reuter’s bashing and ill conceived opinions trying to write them down as facts. (Unreal news companies for the highest bidder).

    igorsky
  • Reply 5 of 18
    19831983 Posts: 1,165member
    Ugh! Get Eddy Cue out of Apple already!
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 6 of 18
    dewmedewme Posts: 2,019member
    The comparison to Apple Music is faulty because Apple actually *likes* music and has made it an important component going all the way back the original iPod. News? Not so much.

    Apple is a dilettante when it comes to news. It's just not that invested in sticking with it, but rather making great noises every six months or so to give the appearance of treating news like it does music. The original Newsstand was good that failed because Apple didn't care about it too much and it withered on the vine. Then we were all supposed to be wowed by Apple News which is just a big RSS feed whose biggest selling point was "how beautiful it looked." If you have an Apple News channel, you still need to use a browser to upload stories. There is no native app on macOS or iOS. Hell, you can't even *schedule* a story being posted. 

    News outlets are right to be wary. Tech companies and news have proven to be oil and water, as you have a generation of young know-nothings who sneer at journalism and print media but insist they have the answer to save both (a topic that is now over a decade old with no end in sight.) And it seems to be eluding people (particularly techie boyz) that journalism is not only hard, but takes resources and goes far beyond mere political punditry. 

    Otherwise, I'm fairly indifferent to Apple News. 
    Great post. I've been using Apple News on and off since it first arrived and I still don't have clarity around what purpose it really serves inside Apple's wheelhouse. Is Apple's value-add some sort of personalized curation/filtering service? Or is it simply one of many news aggregators? Or is it a content storefront like iTunes/Apple Music? Right now it's kind of a mix all of the above, but where's the Apple secret sauce in this formula? Flipboard was doing this well before Apple dipped its toe in the water and I'm not seeing anything that Apple is doing that is clearly superior.

    The way that people consume "news" has changed very radically in the past several years. Journalistic integrity, fact checking, grammar, syntax, and coherent story lines that can be followed by the majority of readers doesn't matter as much as it once did. What is considered "news" has fundamentally changed, most notably with the explosion of self-publishing of self-centered and alternative "news" via Twitter. Readers have about a 4-second attention span and even less long lived interests and concerns. Nothing Apple does in the "news" realm is going to change the consumer side of the equation. Why pay to create a platform for publication when nobody is reading what you publish?

    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 7 of 18
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,564member
    mac_dog said:
    I thought Apple was spending resources ferreting out fake news sources. Why, then, would Bloomberg even be considered?

    Read the story again. It doesn't say that Bloomberg is being considered.

    And while we're here; Bloomberg is the outfit reporting, so how much of it is true is anyone's guess.
    edited December 2018 igorsky
  • Reply 8 of 18
    I got the impression Apple started their Newsstand and then the News app to compete with Google, but then Apple doesn’t like engaging in the collection and exploitation of customer data for advertising, which is what “print news” is all about.
    ravnorodom
  • Reply 9 of 18
    You cannot have quality journalism without people and technical resources and both cost money.

    The NYT was going broke giving away the website for free with ads and is now profitable and growing behind a paywall. The Wall Street Journal was the first in the US to do that. The same was true later of the WaPo after Bezos rescued them from oblivion. Most of the rest of America's papers do not have content to justify a similar price as they are mostly wire service. The NYT, WaPo and WSJ are mostly content original to them.

    $10 a month is not going to get it. My NYT digital sub is $20 a month. A basic digital subscription to the Financial Times is $6.45 a week and the full one is $10.75 a week. The Economist is $152 a year after the teaser rate expires. Bloomberg Digital is $34.99 a month after the teaser rate expires.
  • Reply 10 of 18
    Also, here’s the complete headline of this thread, copied verbatim:

    Apple may launch premium Apple News subscriptions in spring, but getting weak publisher re...


    Presumably that last word is “response”?
  • Reply 11 of 18
    "Some industry executives are concerned that Apple's service — which in its current form as Texture, lets people read a wide range of magazines for $9.99 per month — will rob them of subscribers since Texture/Apple News will be cheaper, according to Bloomberg."

    Who are these executives? Why aren't they quoted directly? I call as much bullshit on this as I do on the supply chain reports about the XS and XR.
    edited December 2018
  • Reply 12 of 18
    I deleted Apple news from my devices recently. I subscribe to the Wash Post and the NY Times digital. If you are interested in celebrity gossip or a lot of adver-torial junk Apple News is for you.  
  • Reply 13 of 18
    thttht Posts: 3,160member
    I’d prefer it if Apple just goes indie with a posteriori Apple Pay micropayments per article, and eliminate ads, especially ad services that publishers employ. For some articles, I would definitely pay 25¢ for an article. Ie, it’s donation ware. If the article is good, there will be a subset of readers that will push the Apple Pay button for $0.25, $0.50, $1.00 for the article. 

    If a big publisher wants to put an article there, they can, but no ads.

    If Apple is going to make the News app a subscription service, the only way to do that right is to fund a news service itself. Like, buy Reuter’s, a sports news service, an entertainment news service, and whatever to provide content.




  • Reply 14 of 18
    FolioFolio Posts: 540member
    I too am disappointed w AppleNews, to the point where I rarely use the Stock app now as it takes forever to load if you have a long watchlist. Texture has great potential, in offering myriad niche magazines postage free, no paper costs, etc with of course added benefits of interactions, sounds and chords if a guitar magazine etc. NY Times and Economist need Apple audience less than the smaller specialized pubs. You’ve gotta experience it on an large iPad or iMac. No clutter. Easy mark up and filing. A tonic for much of the trash or distractions on free Net.
  • Reply 15 of 18
    grady1996grady1996 Posts: 5unconfirmed, member
    spice-boy said:
    I deleted Apple news from my devices recently. I subscribe to the Wash Post and the NY Times digital. If you are interested in celebrity gossip or a lot of adver-torial junk Apple News is for you.  
    I must disagree. I don't know if some other aggregator is better than Apple News but it is pretty good. Whenever I did get any "gossip or adver-torial junk", I just blocked that channel; get none of that anymore. I do see many interesting articles from sources that I do not subscribe to (e.g., Wired, Quartz, Futurism, New Yorker, Guardian, Washington Monthly, Politico, Atlantic, Vox). Also more articles on physics than I would ever see otherwise. And much more. Well worth paying for if they did charge for it. I do wish that "Saved" supported folders rather than just being a date-ordered list.
    tht
  • Reply 16 of 18
    thttht Posts: 3,160member
    grady1996 said:
    spice-boy said:
    I deleted Apple news from my devices recently. I subscribe to the Wash Post and the NY Times digital. If you are interested in celebrity gossip or a lot of adver-torial junk Apple News is for you.  
    I must disagree. I don't know if some other aggregator is better than Apple News but it is pretty good. Whenever I did get any "gossip or adver-torial junk", I just blocked that channel; get none of that anymore. I do see many interesting articles from sources that I do not subscribe to (e.g., Wired, Quartz, Futurism, New Yorker, Guardian, Washington Monthly, Politico, Atlantic, Vox). Also more articles on physics than I would ever see otherwise. And much more. Well worth paying for if they did charge for it. I do wish that "Saved" supported folders rather than just being a date-ordered list.
    Yup. Apple News is a combination of algorithmic, human editor, and user curation. You can block publishers to your hearts content. 

    If they are going offer a subscription, I’d only do it if all the ads go away, at minimum. 
  • Reply 17 of 18
    macguimacgui Posts: 1,178member
    dewme said:
    The way that people consume "news" has changed very radically in the past several years. Journalistic integrity, fact checking, grammar, syntax, and coherent story lines that can be followed by the majority of readers doesn't matter as much as it once did. What is considered "news" has fundamentally changed, most notably with the explosion of self-publishing of self-centered and alternative "news" via Twitter. Readers have about a 4-second attention span and even less long lived interests and concerns.
    This has been my complaint for much if not most of what passes for journalism online. It doesn't help that a 'premium' subscription sounds pricey to me.

    I tried texture on trial and found it wanting at $6.95/mo. This will obviously vary with different individuals, but I wasn't willing to pay $9.95, and adding News to it doesn't really sweeten the deal for me. I'm not particularly fond of subscriptions, so that doesn't help.
  • Reply 18 of 18
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,564member
    grady1996 said:
    spice-boy said:
    I deleted Apple news from my devices recently. I subscribe to the Wash Post and the NY Times digital. If you are interested in celebrity gossip or a lot of adver-torial junk Apple News is for you.  
    I must disagree. I don't know if some other aggregator is better than Apple News but it is pretty good. Whenever I did get any "gossip or adver-torial junk", I just blocked that channel; get none of that anymore. I do see many interesting articles from sources that I do not subscribe to (e.g., Wired, Quartz, Futurism, New Yorker, Guardian, Washington Monthly, Politico, Atlantic, Vox). Also more articles on physics than I would ever see otherwise. And much more. Well worth paying for if they did charge for it. I do wish that "Saved" supported folders rather than just being a date-ordered list.
    Same here. 

    I set it up so I get news on Python and Swift programming, though I occasionally get stories about large snakes being found in bathrooms. 
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