NYT bringing ProJo to iPhone, iPad in 2011August 2nd, 2010 at 3:26 pm by Ted Nesi under General Talk
Update: The Providence Journal’s iPhone/iPad app is scheduled to debut next spring – specifically, in the second quarter (April-June) of 2011, Jennifer Wesley, The Dallas Morning News’ spokeswoman, just told me in an e-mail.
The New York Times Co. said Monday it will begin licensing Press Engine, the software behind its popular iPhone and iPad apps, in the fall. And among the first adopters is A.H. Belo Corp., which owns The Providence Journal.
What’s not clear is when The Journal will launch its apps. The Dallas Morning News plans to introduce its iPad app around the start of 2011, after the company figures out how to charge, A.H. Belo exec James Moroney told AdAge on Monday. He didn’t mention The Journal, though. (I’ve e-mailed an A.H. Belo spokeswoman for comment, and will update if I hear back.)
Unfortunately for Journal readers, so far A.H. Belo appears to have been focusing its digital efforts on The Morning News. The Dallas paper already has both an e-edition and an iPhone app, while the ProJo has neither. But today’s press release certainly makes it sound like the ProJo will be part of the launch.
Also unclear is how this interacts with previously discussed plans for the ProJo to start charging for some stories and perhaps raise the price of the print copy. (The NYT itself is planning to introduce a pay wall early next year.)
For both Times Co. and A.H. Belo, though, this seems like a smart strategy. The NYT’s embrace of technology has been widely praised, and its iPhone app has been downloaded 4.5 million times over the past two years. Its Times Reader desktop application also deserves to be better known. Why should a small publisher like A.H. Belo try to reinvent the wheel, and why shouldn’t the NYT try and make some more money off its investment in R&D?
For more on the NYT’s strategy with Press Engine, check out this solid analysis from Fast Company’s Kit Eaton.