Is apple news considered a must-have by top digital publishers?
Apple News has earned undoubted popularity with digital publishers, a fact attributable to the amount of traffic it generates. However, top digital publishers have noted some significant issues with the app which prevent it from "must-have" status. The issue publishers find with the app involves the lack of available monetization options it includes. Although Apple has begun working on a solution, until that is accomplished the app will fall short of mandatory.
Below you will find the full examination of Apple News and the supporting points for the conclusion that it is not a "must-have" app.
The Issue with Apple News
The popularity of Apple News, currently 50 million monthly users, produces interest in digital publishers, lured by the traffic they receive as a result of the news app. For example, The Atlantic watched their traffic double in the month after Apple News was overhauled. However, according to Digiday, the popular app is only sending these publishers traffic, not the revenue they need.
The revenue issue results from two factors. The first concerns the updated app now allowing articles to be read in the app itself, not sending readers to the source site. This means the readers dodge the advertisements found on the publisher's website. Unfortunately, this is combined with the second issue, the difficulty of advertising on Apple News directly. Although it can be done, and advertisers can keep all the profits, it requires ads be created on Apple's Workbench platform, which requires "additional effort" the publishers do not want to invest. Top digital publishers consistently complaint about the lack of revenue generated by the high traffic volume, claiming it must change.
The problem described here represents a significant flaw in the Apple News app. Digital publishing is a business, and high traffic volume does not interest leadership within these publishing companies just to win a popularity contest. The interest in website traffic results from the publisher's need for the ad revenue that usually is linked to high traffic volume. Without that revenue, the number of readers gained through the Apple News app might be gratifying and will garner interest, but it remains speculative, as publishers consider what might be possible in the future. In the current circumstance, Apple News is popular for these publishers, but by no means a "must-have" app.
The Future of Apple News
While the app has failed to earn high enough regard to be classified as mandatory with top digital publishers, that will likely change in the near future. Representatives from the iPhone-making company have indicated the intention of allowing publishers to utilize the technology they already employ to create ads for their platform. There has even been a test-run of such a circumstance, with publishers on Apple News given the opportunity to test-run Google's DoubleClick service on the Apple News platform. While these changes remain in infant stages, the innovation that has been a hallmark of Apple development from the start suggests the problem will soon be solved. If that proves to be a true statement, the "must-have" title should be reevaluated regarding the Apple News app.
The Apple News app should be considered a "must-have" app for digital publishers due to the 50 million people that use it each month. Unfortunately, the monetization issues make the app more akin to a curiosity than a mandatory download. However, while the app misses the mark as-is, this will likely change when Apple completes their solution.