Here’s the frontpage of today’s The Times iPad application:
The app has been getting quite a lot of attention over the past few days particularly since it represents a corresponding shift toward a paid-for experience of The Times and The Sunday Times.
I’m going to produce a video-walkthrough shortly — but meantime I wonder if you’ve downloaded the app and used it? What do you think of it?
I, for one, was absolutely astonished to open up the application on Sunday morning and find nothing new.
“Where’s the Sunday Times?” I wondered, “I’ve paid a tenner for this so where is it?”
I stared — very annoyed — at the blank screen of the App Frontpage (which was showing Saturday’s edition as the latest). I was very annoyed because you and I know it’s a piece of simplicity to dump The Sunday Times into this app. The same production system that creates The Times daily content can, I’m sure, do the same with The Sunday Times.
On Saturday morning I was part of the initiated, part of the few, part of the exclusive ‘Times App’ users. Because I’d paid the tenner.
On Sunday morning I was unceremoniously dumped outside, left to stare, nose pressed against the window. And highly, highly unimpressed.
I thought I was buying access to a daily news app. Not a Monday-to-Saturday app. Whilst News Corporation might think they’re two different brands, they’re not — not to me. All I wanted and all I expected was some sodding news.
And what a total gimp I felt for even tapping on The Times app on Sunday morning.
The real, REAL danger for News Corporation is that I’m only one tap away from the rest of the planet’s news sources. I brought up Safari, tapped on The Telegraph and boom. I was done. I had a quick scan and got on with my day. Whether it was The Telegraph or The Guardian or The Times, you know what, I couldn’t really give a stuff.
So I’m not impressed with that ‘no Sunday Times‘ policy. But I have been enjoying getting to grips with the application. I really like the idea that it downloads an entire copy so I could read it on the train or on the plane without having to connect to the internet. That does appeal. I also like the way they’ve chosen to lay out and animate the various sections.
I’m quite disappointed that I can’t ‘do’ anything with the content. I can’t, for example, email a link to a friend. And I obviously can’t tweet about it.
Have you tried the app? How have you found it?