WSJ on iPad for $17.99 a month

bzz

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 22, 2010
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WSJ on iPad for $17.99 a month, magazines to be at or near newsstand prices?

The Wall Street Journal is running a piece that focuses on ad sales for the iPad. Pretty boring stuff except for a few nuggets related to the actual content we crave. Rupert Murdoch already confirmed that his monument to main stream media was coming to the iPad. Hell, they've even been treated to a rare, in-house device to assist with the development of the iPad version of the Wall Street Journal. Now it's quoting "a person familiar with the matter" (wink) who says that The Journal plans to charge subscribers $17.99 per month for iPad subscriptions -- for comparison, the print version of the WSJ costs $349 for 52 weeks or about $29 per month. Not bad, but you can't roll up an iPad to swat the dog.

Conversely, Magazines appear set to offer weekly or monthly editions out of the gate, not annual subscriptions. Sources told the WSJ that the April issue of Hearst's Esquire magazine (no stranger to new media) will arrive in downloadable format without advertisements for $2.99, $2 less than the newsstand price, and will include five music videos (each containing the phrase "somewhere in Mississippi," oddly enough) to take advantage of the device's multimedia capabilities. On the other hand, a full iPad issue of Men's Health with match the glossy's $4.99 price. Of course, as we heard earlier, publishers will be experimenting with advertising and pricing models to see what works so expect things to be fluid for quite some time after the April 3rd launch.

http://www.engadget.com/2010/03/25/wsj-on-ipad-17-99-a-month-magazines-to-be-at-or-near-newsstand/
 

kernkraft

macrumors 68020
Jun 25, 2009
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Paper subscription cost less than what you said. I like my paper matte and disposable.
 

.Andy

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Jul 18, 2004
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It's an interesting situation. I wonder how it will pan out. Murdoch is desperate to find a viable business model in the internet world. It'd be one hell of a negotiation between him and steve. Don't think he'll want to lose much control over content but at the same time delivering content to devices like the ipad might be one of the few ways forward. I sure as hell wouldn't be interested in paying to view online on my laptop. Not even sure I'll be persuaded to view such content on an ipad either though....
 

stridemat

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Staff member
Apr 2, 2008
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It's an interesting situation. I wonder how it will pan out. Murdoch is desperate to find a viable business model in the internet world. It'd be one hell of a negotiation between him and steve. Don't think he'll want to lose much control over content but at the same time delivering content to devices like the ipad might be one of the few ways forward. I sure as hell wouldn't be interested in paying to view online on my laptop. Not even sure I'll be persuaded to view such content on an ipad either though....
especially as you can get the news for free from other websites (BBC in the UK)
 

.Andy

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Jul 18, 2004
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especially as you can get the news for free from other websites (BBC in the UK)
Indeed. I've been following murdoch's plans quite a bit in australia. I'm not sure what he's going to do. Rolling back what is free to save for pay-per-view will only drive people to other sites. And I'm not sure what novel, extra value-added content he can provide pay-per-view to distinguish it from the free stuff. Time will tell.
 

Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
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It's an interesting situation. I wonder how it will pan out. Murdoch is desperate to find a viable business model in the internet world.
Curious you would say that given the WSJ is the only mass market newspaper on the planet that is able to make a profit charging for Internet access. I don't really see an "desperation," on Murdock's part. At a time when most papers are going under WSJ is making big bucks.

As for the iPad price it's about $50 less than the Kindle price, so a good start, but its still more expensive than an online subscription which is about $120 for the first year. That is the iPad versions real competition. I wonder if they will offer some sort of bundle deal like they do now with the print/online version.
 

kernkraft

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Jun 25, 2009
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Curious you would say that given the WSJ is the only mass market newspaper on the planet that is able to make a profit charging for Internet access. I don't really see an "desperation," on Murdock's part. At a time when most papers are going under WSJ is making big bucks.

As for the iPad price it's about $50 less than the Kindle price, so a good start, but its still more expensive than an online subscription which is about $120 for the first year. That is the iPad versions real competition. I wonder if they will offer some sort of bundle deal like they do now with the print/online version.
We have a paper, called 'Financial Times'. They also charge for online content and it seems that it works for them. But money is an issue where quality content really matters and where charging premium for certain content was never an issue. That is not to say that the whole industry is going to be saved by Apple's effort. In fact, I think if anything, Apple will be blamed for securing a few whilst losing a lot.
 

Chupa Chupa

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Jul 16, 2002
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\ In fact, I think if anything, Apple will be blamed for securing a few whilst losing a lot.
I don't understand how Apple can be blamed for losing anything. Publishers make the decisions about their paper(s). Right now most papers are on a slide to the bottom. Apple is tossing them a life line to the 21st century. Whether publishers want to grasp onto it or continue their fall into oblivion is their choice completely.
 

zipa

macrumors 65816
Feb 19, 2010
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We have a paper, called 'Financial Times'. They also charge for online content and it seems that it works for them.
Financial papers have the advantage that people are using them as information sources for stock trading etc. and can thus afford to pay for a good and reliable near-realtime news source.
 

bniu

macrumors 6502a
Mar 21, 2010
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i guess i won't be reading the WSJ...these days, the market clearing price for news is $0!
 

.Andy

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Curious you would say that given the WSJ is the only mass market newspaper on the planet that is able to make a profit charging for Internet access. I don't really see an "desperation," on Murdock's part. At a time when most papers are going under WSJ is making big bucks.
I don't know about the wsj in particular but times are far tougher for news corp overall than you present. They lost $3.4 billion last financial year in a combination of the recession and profits continually being eroded by the internet. They can't charge as much for advertising on online services, and the space if far more competitive than traditional print. As has already been posted people have far more choice online, as well as there being a far lower barrier to enter the online news market at a global level. He's even lashed out recently at websites that aggregate news for this very reason as content "kleptomaniacs".

The time of making obscene profits from advertising and the power that goes with a stranglehold on print media is dead. Murdoch has admitted this and with the loss of so much cash last year he has on many occasions indicated the future is to move away from relying on the advertising dollar of yesteryear as quickly as possible. I didn't know the wsj was still making a profit, but it's quite an extrapolation to extend that success to all news corp publications. His empire includes a heterogenous mixture of markets, and I dare say many will not be keen to pay for online access. We'll see in time however.

http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/society-and-culture/the-brave-new-world-of-media-advertising-20091124-j8t6.html

http://www.theage.com.au/business/murdochs-plan-to-turn-cyberspace-into-next-river-of-gold-20091017-h29i.html

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/business/murdoch-stresses-alternatives-to-advertising-income-20091018-h2v1.html

http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2009/s2716865.htm
 

Chupa Chupa

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Jul 16, 2002
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i guess i won't be reading the WSJ...these days, the market clearing price for news is $0!

Except for the WSJ and handful of papers with useful info not available anywhere else. Generic news is worthless. Agreed. From what you are writing it sounds like you have no use for the info in the WSJ, which is fine. That doesn't mean there isn't a market because, as noted, the WSJ is one of the few newspapers that makes a profit right now and can get away charging for access to its site.
 

.Andy

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Generic news is worthless. Agreed.
But free news isn't necessarily "generic" or "worthless". There are wonderfully deep resources like the BBC and ABC (australia) available online. As well as independent sites and blogs which can provide content for many more points of view with different emphasis. As well as discussion forums to keep people engaged far longer per page view.
 

Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
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I don't know about the wsj in particular but times are far tougher for news corp overall than you present.
I read my comment and then reread it. I can't seem to find where I spoke about Newscorp's overall financial situation. From what I read I think I was talking about the subject of this thread, the WSJ, and Murdocks "desperation" for an Internet strategy. I dunno. Maybe the words on my monitor come out different on your side of the screen but looks to me like I'm caught in the middle of an attempted hijacking. ;)
 

.Andy

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I read my comment and then reread it. I can't seem to find where I spoke about Newscorp's overall financial situation. From what I read I think I was talking about the subject of this thread, the WSJ, and Murdocks "desperation" for an Internet strategy. I dunno. Maybe the words on my monitor come out different on your side of the screen but looks to me like I'm caught in the middle of an attempted hijacking. ;)
You said;
Curious you would say that given the WSJ is the only mass market newspaper on the planet that is able to make a profit charging for Internet access. I don't really see an "desperation," on Murdock's part.
Implying that because the wsj is profitable finances are rosy for murdock [sic]. But Murdoch owns News Corp. News Corp own the wall street journal. News Corp are losing a lot of money and power they previously wielded, irrespective of the wsj being profitable. They are desperate (or eager, or keen chose a word that suits) to move away from the failing model of advertising-supported content across their whole business model. I was speaking more broadly - and you replied to me. I hope that's clearer.
 

flyguy206

macrumors 6502a
Aug 5, 2008
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If you don't read the wsj then this should not bother you at all. I will buy magzines that i read on the ipad if the are priced fair. if i can get the print version from cheaper then the ipad version something is wrong. But people will make a big deal about this and they don't even read the wsj so it not like it effecting them. I noticed that site like engadget are just places that post anything to get some dumb 16 year old geeks comment.
 

kernkraft

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Jun 25, 2009
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But free news isn't necessarily "generic" or "worthless". There are wonderfully deep resources like the BBC and ABC (australia) available online. As well as independent sites and blogs which can provide content for many more points of view with different emphasis. As well as discussion forums to keep people engaged far longer per page view.
I agree. I subscribe to The Economist and despite paying around £2.50 for each weekly issue as a subscriber (and enjoying online content a bit), I love their free podcasts. That is the kind of free content that should and probably will survive. But of course, somewhere along the line that is contributing towards generating more revenue. 'Generic' bloggers, however, can hardly survive with even the best content, so they either grow bigger and secure some reliable contributors or just waste away. I follow TUAW and I regularly have the impression that it's not what I would be willing to pay for.




Financial papers have the advantage that people are using them as information sources for stock trading etc. and can thus afford to pay for a good and reliable near-realtime news source.
Which is almost exactly what I wrote immediately after the sentence that you quoted.

I noticed that site like engadget are just places that post anything to get some dumb 16 year old geeks comment.

You would be surprised to know how many times I felt that teenagers were flooding this site.
 

robotkiller

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2009
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I really think that success for online media lies in very low pricing, but very high number of subscriptions. I'm not subbing at those prices, even if they are lower cost than print media.
Hell - if the digital subs were at least equivalent to print prices, I would be very interested (ie ~15 dollars a year).

$3 - $5 dollars an issue is a joke.
 

stewie1

macrumors member
Feb 23, 2010
97
4
Someone explain to me why I would pay WSJ $17.99/month to use an iPad application when I can access WSJ.com on the same device at a cost of $2 per week.
 

mstrze

macrumors 68000
Nov 6, 2009
1,916
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Someone explain to me why I would pay WSJ $17.99/month to use an iPad application when I can access WSJ.com on the same device at a cost of $2 per week.
Greater amount of content and likely more dynamic content?