Archive for pressreader
NewspaperDirect has brought new social functionality to its seminal PressReader application for iOS today. Digital subscribers can now comment on newspaper articles and interact with each other. Traditional newspapers are mainly a quiet, solitary experience, and if you really want to make your viewpoint known, you have to write an editorial. No longer, as you can easily comment on any one of the company’s 1,000 newspapers that carry and make your viewpoint known.
Not only has PressReader introduced new social commenting, but it also implemented a support and oppose button to each article. You can let people know how you feel about a particular story or even oppose someone’s comment.
Finally, it has enhanced the ability to search for a specific newspaper publication, instead of having to manually browse for your particular publication. There is also the ability to search for newspapers based on particular keywords, which is useful if you are traveling abroad and want to see what’s happening in the city you are visiting. For example, I can search for New York, and see all the local papers that are available from that particular city.
I think the ability to bring more social interactions to thousands of newspapers to be fairly compelling. Sure, some existing digital editions like The Guardian allow you to do this on their website, PressReader brings it to thousands that would normally never allow people to comment on their various articles. Regrettably, all of these new features are only on the iPad and iPhone right now, but hopefully they are pushed to Android and other platforms soon.
Traditional publishing companies that focus on newspapers and magazines have been embracing digital over the course of the last few years. In some cases, we are seeing the digital editions outselling their printed counterparts. However, maintaining a fleet of Android and iOS apps can be taxing with all of the different screen size requirements. Many smaller publications are finding it economically unfeasible to develop and maintain dedicated apps. To solve this problem Microsoft and NewspaperDirect have developed a Windows 8 App Building Program, aimed exclusively at magazine and newspaper publishers.
The new App Building program allows publishers to maintain and develop their own native Windows 8 application. It incorporates the same type of technology that PressReader uses by streamlining XML and graphic heavy content. It will allow publishers to maintain a replica edition of their traditional print edition and convert it to a more e-reader and tablet friendly format. Users can click on the heading of of any given article and be able to strip away the superfluous data and give the user pure text. This is useful for increasing the size of the font or even adopting a read aloud feature.
Shane Davies, Director, Cloud Services Providers & Top Consumer Brands at Microsoft Canada said, “The growth in the popularity of Windows 8 reflects the shift in how people want to experience content across devices. Brands are already starting to get up close and personal with audiences in real time, on a global scale. NewspaperDirect, a leader in magazine and newspaper applications, and the launch of their Windows 8 app platform, will provide a platform for publishers to reach and engage their audience in compelling ways, and will provide consumers with a range of quality, brand name applications.”
Publishers utilizing the new program will not have to go it alone. One of the benefits of the existing relationship between NewspaperDirect and Microsoft is the synergy that will be bestowed upon new publications. There is an advertising initiative in place that will give publishers the ability to get preferential placement in the Windows 8 App Store, in their regional markets.
Most small town publishers and emerging magazine companies could benefit from these new tools. It will be interesting to see if more indie companies take advantage of something like this, seeing as it requires little effort to produce each daily/monthly issue, once you have the pipeline established.
PressReader has had a storied relationship with Blackberry, with the entire line of Playbook tablets having the newspaper app bundled on all units. NewspaperDirect has been fairly supportive of the entire Blackberry ecosystem and has debuted a new native app for BB10.
PressReader for BB10 allows customers to have replica editions synced to Blackberry HUB, to give you notifications on when new issues are available. BlackBerry 10 customers can download the re-engineered PressReader app from BlackBerry World and their favorite publications from a growing list of more than 2,300 digital replicas of newspapers and magazines from 100 countries and in 56 languages, including the International Herald Tribune, The Australian, The Globe and Mail, and Le Monde.
Replica newspapers are something PressReader specializes in. The app provides an exact mirror of the printed version, including classifieds, obituaries, Sunday funnies, and localized advertising. The BB10 version allows you to click on the article name and get a pure text version of it, stripping away all of the superfluous images and CSS data.
“NewspaperDirect is delighted to release a new optimized version of PressReader for BlackBerry 10 smartphones,” said Alex Kroogman, CEO of NewspaperDirect. “Not only will BlackBerry 10 owners be amazed at the vast selection of magazines and newspapers suddenly at their fingertips, our publishing partners will benefit from having their content instantly available to all BlackBerry 10 users.”
NewspaperDirect has just inked a deal with DTI Solutions to offer digital newspapers on all flights with the Flydubai airline. Starting today, over 45 replica newspapers will be available on flights through DTI Solutions’ industry leading in-flight software solution: e-readers.
Patrick Préfontaine, president of DTI Solutions, said: “We’re delighted to have helped flydubai achieve this historic project. We truly believe that eReader solutions are strategic for airlines to provide passengers with relevant and engaging content, while benefiting from the noted advantages of digital content such as weight and cost reductions compared to paper-based media onboard.”
Flydubai’s Chief Executive Officer, Ghaith Al Ghaith , explains: “Daily news consumption trends have shifted since the introduction of smartphones and personal electronic devices, and passengers now expect to be able to read their favorite newspapers electronically on board. Offering daily newspaper updates digitally is a real logistical challenge for airlines, and flydubai is proud to be the first to provide this enhanced passenger experience.”
The Toronto Star is one of Ontario’s most prominent newspapers and is gravitating towards the digital realm. Their new replica version basically just mirrors the print edition, complete with local adverts, television listings, and other localized content. It is available today on PressReader and e-readers, such as the Kobo Vox.
“Paywalls are becoming a popular way for publishers to offset lower online advertising revenues, but it’s only half the equation,” said Nikolay Malyarov , vice president of publishing and legal affairs at NewspaperDirect. “Our publishing partners recognize that focusing on core competencies is a proven strategy for managing costs, which is why more than 1,000 of them have chosen SmartEdition technology for their digital editions and PressReader for their applications. This strategy not only saves them money, it adds value to their bundles, giving readers all the quality content of the printed edition, enhanced with powerful digital features, on their device of choice.”
In the last few years, digital newspapers have started to become a booming business with major players in the industry entering the fray. Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, Apple, and a myriad of others are trying to appeal to people who want their local or national publications delivered to their e-reader or tablet. NewspaperDirect might not be a household name, but the Richmond, British Columbia company is quietly becoming the market leader. How did they attain a dominate market position and what makes them distinctive in the marketplace?
NewspaperDirect was first established in 1999 by CEO Alex Kroogman, as a Print-On-Demand company that offered global travelers their local newspaper in hotels. If you have ever stayed at a hotel, you normally receive a local newspaper outside your door in the early hours. Did you know that international papers, however, are not delivered to the hotel by the papers’ own publishing companies? One of the more interesting ways traditional publishing works is that hotels will outsource the papers’ printing to a NewspaperDirect authorized dealer in town. The company will print off the papers and deliver them right to the hotels and then they are left at your door.
In 2003, three employees Alex Gruntsev, Igor Smirnoff, and Nikolay Malyarov have branched out a digital arm of the business and launched PressDisplay, the company’s digital kiosk. The small team faced many challenges in the early years by trying to convince newspapers and publishers that the future was digital. The company formed many relationships in various regional and international airports by using kiosk stations that would print out newspapers on-demand. At that time, only 140 papers were available because many of the newspaper companies were very resistant to the entire digital space. This was a huge success for Newspaper Direct, but hardware errors and printing issues prevented it from catching on.
In the years that followed, NewspaperDirect began to get traction in the industry and now offers 3,000 newspapers and magazines from in 100 different countries. PressDisplay, the “all-you-can-read for one price” kiosk, has a litany of apps on Windows 8, Blackberry, Android, iOS, and its online reader—all branded as PressReader. The company has really grown up during the last few years and currently resides in a futuristic headquarters with a very open air concept.
The newspaper industry is very different from traditional publishing with ebooks and print. The entire newspaper segment for both print and digital is based on the Audit Bureau of Circulations. This is the determining factor that tells advertisers and invested parties how many people are reading the paper and its overall reach. This helps determine the amount of advertising dollars a paper could charge companies looking to place advertisements. It was important to monitor this when Digital Newspapers were first hitting the scene, but the tools available were very immature compared to those of their printed counterparts.
The lack of advertising in digital newspapers is one of the barriers that is preventing the entire industry from growing as fast as ebooks are. Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Apple offer their own ways of presenting newspapers. In essence, they deliver all of their newspapers via dedicated apps as a way to consume the media. This builds no consistency in the user experience, in that papers like the New York Times are quite different than USA Today. PressReader is the only application that offers you the true newspaper experience that mirrors print.
One of the big issues right now in ebooks is what the major companies do with your data. Whenever you read a book or flip a few pages, your habits are sent off to Amazon, Google, or whoever else you did business with. This helps with advanced metrics and PressReader offers something similar to its advertising and publisher partners. It has developed cool new Heatmap technology that visually shows you how people are clicking on articles, and what the most popular sections are. This helps the publications tailor their content better to the digital space. When Rupert Murdoch was looking at this technology of his own newspaper, he exclaimed “Damn, this writer is so overpaid! No one is reading his articles!”
PressReaders success can be attributed to preserving the traditional printed newspaper experience in digital format. You have your Sunday funnies, crosswords, obituaries, localized adverts, and trading corner. Many people find its easier to gravitate towards the digital medium that mirrors print. This is PressReader’s core strength: not to simply give you a PDF, but to add its own twists to each issue. Users have the ability to augment text sizes, comment on articles, Tweet, or just strip away all of the CSS elements to give you raw text, which is easier on the eyes on smaller screen devices.
So how exactly does PressReader preserve the printed experience in digital format? Every newspaper company that does business with the company sends a PDF the same hour the issue is physically printed. It is churned out in raw XML format by an automated process with operators standing by to make sure there are no errors with the final product. Once a PDF is converted to XML format, PressReader can use its own proprietary technologies to add all of its social media elements and core-functionality. If you are reading on a tablet, you can pinch and zoom, or make the fonts bigger. If you are reading it online, it is converted to a format optimized for the online experience. In many cases, PressReader offers the digital newspapers online before the printed equivalent is available in physical kiosks in local markets.
PressReader sees a massive amount of success due to the diversification of its core business model. The company not only markets newspapers to end users, but also engages in B2B and offers its digital solutions to schools, libraries, companies, and government institutions—market verticals which individual publishers cannot reach themselves. For instance, the company has over 10,000 libraries which offer digital newspapers and magazines for their patrons.
It also white-labels its technology for regional publishers and launched country specific digital kiosks for national publishing groups so that customers can have easy access to every single paper published in their country at a terminal, online, or on any device of their choice. The entire experience is localized in their language and UI tailored by the companies that do business with PressReader.
Igor Smirnoff, who heads up digital operations and relationships with hardware vendors at NewspaperDirect, said, “PressReader is currently bundled on over 15,000,000 tablets such as the Blackberry Playbook and the entire fleet of Samsung devices.” I remember a few years ago at IFA when Samsung announced its first 7 inch tablet and unveiled Readers Hub, PressReader was front and center. Manufacturers like Samsung, ASUS, Acer, HTC and others have their devices with PressReader built into it. This helps the company gain more traction and turns casual viewers into paid subscribers, while delivering valuable daily content in every possible language to readers worldwide.
One of the ways PressReader is different than any other company is due to its pricing structure. When PressReader first started, it offered an unlimited plan of $9.99 to download and read as many newspapers as you wanted every single month. This has increased to $29.99 in the last few years, with the increased costs the company incurs, but also the growing piece of the pie that publishers demand. Still, being able to read any newspaper in the world every day is very compelling and massively cheaper than the alternatives.
Digital newspapers are entering a massive transitional period, similar to the types of growing pains music and movies had before iTunes. No one can quite agree on the right strategy for the industry and few events are able to bring all the major players in the game to the same table. One of the most notable paradigm shifts in the last year has been the advent of the paywall. Online newspapers used to give all of their content away for free on their websites and make the money back with advertising. The New York Times began to offer a few articles a month for free and if you wanted to read more, you had to pay a monthly fee. Over 300 newspapers in the US and dozens of newspapers in Canada already introduced paywalls to their sites, and this trend continues with more national and international papers following the suit. A subscription with PressReader still delivers a better, all-in value than than paying any Paywall fee.
PressReader is definitely dominating the digital newspaper sphere and helping other publishers through its own strategies, and it is unleashing some very new developments. Recently, the company got involved with digital magazines and is solidifying relationships with many domestic partners to unveil a new growth opportunity. Right now, most of its magazines are relegated towards issues released from India and other foreign markets, but active negotiations are taking place with every major magazine publishing house, including Canadian and American.
PressReader really floats under the radar of most mainstream media that covers digital publishing issues, but many publishing companies use these guys as their research and development center and use the information to deploy innovation for their readers. There are some massive new changes and initiatives PressReader will be unveiling in 2013, so make sure to keep checking out Good e-Reader for all the latest developments.
Newspaper Direct has unveiled its seminal PressReader app today for Windows 8! This is a native app written for the new Metro interface and brings over 2300 newspapers right to your desktop. This will ensure that you can take advantage of your 26 inch PC screen to keep abreast of all the local news or read on your MS Surface Tablet.
If you’re looking for the ultimate reading experience for your favorite newspapers and magazines, then you have to try PressReader. It is without a doubt the most satisfying, engaging, feature-rich, and entertaining newspaper and magazine reading application you’ll ever use. Browse, zoom in, and read full digital replicas of thousands of newspapers and magazines from 97 countries just like you would in print. Or journey through the attention-grabbing SmartFlow stream of articles where visual clues will not only enhance your reading experience, they will reveal new gems of content you’ll be delighted to discover.
You can select from various fonts when you are reading your newspaper, to ensure that everything is aligned to your personal taste. When you take out a subscription, each issue is automatically delivered right to your account. One of the best things is that you get seven issues you can download completely for free! This way, you can really test the waters and see if you like it, before paying to subscribe.
PressReader is a free download from the Microsoft Windows Store, check it out!
NewspaperDirect has confirmed today that its original PressReader app will be available on the Blackberry 10 platform.The company intends on bringing over its massive library of more than 2,300 full-content digital newspapers and magazines from 100 countries in 56 languages.
“We are committed to giving our subscribers and those of our SmartEdition publishing partners the optimum reading experience on the latest mobile devices,” said Alex Kroogman, CEO of NewspaperDirect. “Our development team is making excellent progress on the new BlackBerry 10 platform, and there’s no question that when PressReader debuts for BlackBerry 10 it will set new standards for delivering the world’s media on mobile handsets.”
PressReader has been very loyal to the Blackberry platform since 2007 and introduced support for the Playbook the day it was launched. Its newspaper selection appeals to readers based all over the world, and the company does not lock you into any specific region. You can quite easily subscribe to UK, USA, Canada, and India based content at the same time. This app is expected to be widely available on the upcoming smartphones that are planned for release in Q1 2013. PressReader is also making sure the app will work on the next generation of the Playbook.
PressReader is well known for providing over 2100 different newspapers from all over the world and is one of the leading content delivery systems. The company has just released version 3.1 for the new iPad, to give you retina quality images and text.
If you have never heard of PressReader before, they are a one of the leading newspaper companies on the internet. They are a subsidiary of Newspaper Direct, which is based in Richmond, BC. They have apps for Android, iOS, Blackberry, and a slew of others. They tend to play nice with almost every platform, which is great for people who upgrade to new devices often. They have a solid subscription plan for a paper for around $0.99 and a pay as you go for $29.99, which gives you access to all of their publications.
This video documents some of our experiences with the latest build. I show three different publications to give you a sense of what to expect. Images look crisp and text looks really great. One of the downsides is that sometimes images and text need a few seconds to buffer to give you the highest quality content. This is a problem with the buffer/refresh issues that have plagued a number of apps. Zinio seemed to have solved it with their magazines, which are very image heavy. Hopefully, Press Reader will amend this small issue. Otherwise, this is a very solid upgrade that really delivers quality newspapers not found in any other ecosystem on iOS.
Newspaper Direct, the folks behind the popular application for reading your favorite newspapers, will be a part of the Blackberry Playbook soon. When RIM releases their next firmware update it will come installed on your unit. You can gain access to 1,900 different papers from many different countries on a subscription basis. Vancouver Sun, New York Times, and all the ones you want to read are currently available. The app is already available for the Playbook on the sparsely populated App World. It’s free, so check it out.