updated 01:00 pm EDT, Fri July 30, 2010
News Corp could commit whole group to tablets
News Corp could soon start up a division dedicated solely to publishing on the iPad and other tablets, insiders said Friday. The company will decide whether or not to move ahead by the fall and would produce content specific to tablets rather than simply reprint magazine and newspaper material. FT contacts understood that the group would get all-new staff and would only borrow the resources, not the articles, from established print publications.
The media firm's well-known chief executive, Rupert Murdoch, has openly declared himself a fan of the iPad as a publishing medium and anticipates it being the future of reading more than small readers like the Kindle. He had the company acquire the Skiff from Hearst and has pledged the development of Internet-based journalism.
Much of the impetus behind the sudden preference for tablets has been monetization. Murdoch has preferred pay-to-read access to the WSJ, Times and other outlets on the web rather than rely solely on ads, and native tablet apps move this to a newspaper-sized device while preventing easy workarounds. Tablets like the iPad can produce a more print-like layout than an e-reader and can handle more advanced features like videos.