updated 01:40 pm EDT, Thu October 18, 2012
Final print edition due at end of the year
Newsweek, a US magazine that has been running since 1933, will be going digital-only at the start of next year. After running for nearly 80 years, the magazine will print its last paper-based edition on December 31, 2012, and will instead be using apps and a website to pass news and articles to its readers.
The publication will rebranded to Newsweek Global, and will be a single, worldwide edition that is optimized for tablets and paid for by a subscription. The Daily Beast, a companion publication, will continue to host some of Newsweek's content. Despite only being four years old, The Daily Beast pulls in over 15 million unique visitors a month, a 70 percent increase in the last year alone.
In a joint post on The Daily Beast, editor-in-chief and founder of The Newsweek Daily Beast Company Tina Brown and CEO Baba Shetty acknowledged the growth of tablets in the US, which is claimed will exceed 70 million by the end of this year. "We have reached a tipping point at which we can most efficiently reach our readers in all-digital format," wrote Brown and Shetty, noting that a Pew Research study last month suggested 39 percent of Americans get their news from online sources. "This was not the case just two years ago. It will increasingly be the case in the years ahead."
The company expects to lose a number of staff in the transition, with both editorial and business operations sections within the US and internationally set to see reductions in employees.
Switching to a digital-only existence is a difficult feat to accomplish. News Corporation launched iPad newspaper The Daily but found it difficult to gain enough of a readership to be financially secure. Reports in July suggested that the publication could still be shut down because of ongoing financial losses totaling around $30 million per year.