Apple today announced that coming with iOS 9 this Fall would be a new default app; News. As you would expect, News will collect and recommend news articles for you to read on your iPhone or iPad, based on what you like to read. The features of the News app are reminiscent of Google News (for the recommended articles), Flipboard (the ability to follow publishers and topics) and Facebook’s recent launch of Instant Articles (custom, gorgeous articles on mobile).
“News seamlessly delivers the articles you want to read in a beautiful and uncluttered format, while respecting your privacy, because Apple doesn’t share your personal data,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “We already have nearly 20 publishers representing more than 50 titles joining us, including Condé Nast, ESPN, The New York Times, Hearst, Time Inc., CNN and Bloomberg.”
News will launch as part of iOS 9, coming later this Fall. At launch, News will only be available to iOS 9 users in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.
Just like Apple Music, the News app in iOS 9 features a ‘For You’ tab which will display “a continuous stream of articles” based on the Channels and Topics that a user chooses to follow. Channels represent brands and publications such as The New York Times or Wired, whilst Topics are collections of similar articles whether it be broad like ‘Politics’ or narrow like ‘Food Science’.
Usefully, the For You section will become more personalized as a user reads more, with News app refining the selection of stories displayed based on past history. To find Channels and Topics to follow, the app includes an Explore section which will make suggestions based on what a user has already followed and read.
News combines the visually rich layout of a magazine with the immediacy and customization of digital media. News follows over a million topics and pulls relevant stories based on your specific interests that can be easily shared or saved for later — without compromising your privacy.
Apple News Format
In order to appear in the News app, publishers will need to sign up and provide Apple with an RSS feed of their articles. But News will also support articles which have been created with the new Apple News Format. This isn’t yet available, but it will give publishers more control over how articles appear to users. Articles created in Apple News Format can incorporate photo galleries, videos and animation, as well as using custom layouts and typography. Publishers using Apple News Format will also get “access to a rich suite of tools to measure user engagement with your content”.
Apple News Format is not yet available for publishers to use, but will be coming soon.
“Condé Nast’s premium content deserves a premium mobile experience and the News app delivers that,” said Bob Sauerberg, President of Condé Nast. “News offers an environment that combines the rich, immersive design of our photography, artwork and editorial expertise with the interactivity and dynamism of digital media — it’s stunning.”
— Tom Standage (@tomstandage) June 9, 2015
- Apple is working on a detailed content guideline policy, but its current version makes clear that any sponsored articles must be marked as such.
- Publishers will receive 100% of ad revenue for ads they sell, or 70% if they sell ads using Apple’s iAd platform.
- Re/code reports that the News app will replace the Newsstand folder, and Newsstand apps will be returned to the Homescreen and will live alongside regular apps, like they once did.
- If you’re interested in publishing to the News app, you can learn more here.