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James Murdoch Confirms The Daily Subscriptions, Launching In The “Next Few Weeks”

Rumors about News Corp.’s The Daily, an upcoming digital newspaper for the iPad, have been floating around for months now. The publication, result of months of hard work from a team of 100+ journalists in New York, is expected to introduce a new automatic subscription system through iTunes and to be heavily based on images and videos. Until now, though, these have been more or less rumors.

At the DLD Conference in Munich, Germany, James Murdoch, son of Ruper Murdoch and Chairman & CEO of News Corp, gave some additional details about The Daily. Weekly subscriptions at $0.99 have been confirmed by Murdoch himself, and the app should finally launch in the “next few weeks”.

Q: When is The Daily going to launch?

So first, The Daily is going to be a very exciting digital publication, which I think should be launching in the next few weeks, I hope.

It’s going to be a brand new piece of journalism. We want to get out there quickly, at a good price, and I think it will surprise people. I also think it will succeed or fail on the journalism part, not the bells and whistles.

Q: You already employ about 126 people on the journalistic side for The Daily, and the price will be 99 US cents. Is that sufficient?

Well, we wanted it to have a very good price, affordable for most people, at 99 cents a week.

It lowers the barrier for people to enjoy high quality journalism. We realize the pricing models for apps and paid journalism as a whole is still developing, whether it will be bundled or tiered, and so on.

About News Corp and Apple:

Q: Let’s move on to Apple, with whom you’ve been working together. Is it a good partner for you?

We partner with them in a variety of areas, from iBooks to iTunes for our movie and TV shows business, so we have constant discussions about pricing and distribution methods. The interesting thing is that we create copyrighted content across the board, so we’re all learning our way through in different areas.

With Apple, there’s positive engagement, we get a huge amount of support from them on The Daily for example. Obviously, we’ll have arguments with them in the future, on pricing, rules, and so on. But I would call it a positive relationship.

Previous rumors suggested The Daily would launch in January, with iTunes subscriptions, with an announcement from Steve Jobs and Rupert Murdoch.

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