Flurry, a mobile analytics company known for their strong industry statistics released their February report today. The report is interesting as it relates to the consistent surge of iPhone developers and their unique demographics. What is interesting to our readers is the specific attention it gave to the news category. As expected traditional media sources are dominating the news category. This is mostly due to the fact that it is not easy to simply start publishing the news and creating content. What it does point out though is that the iPhone and other smartphones are very useful channels to distribute content very inexpensively and target a very attractive demographic.
Possibly, more interesting is the rise of online news sources on the iPhone. Flurry believes that with the release of the iPad we are going to see an even strong supply and demand for blogs and other online media sources. It is therefore essential that if your newspaper does not have an app now, to act fast. If you wait too long, the online media sources will own the real estate on users phones and other mobile devices. More below and in the report.
Like gaming, the creation of compelling content in News is a specialized and costly operation. To source and report quality news, companies often have to span various media such as TV broadcast, radio and print, which further increases cost. It’s therefore no surprise that Traditional Media dominates the News category, controlling nearly two thirds. For traditional media (e.g., New York Times, ABC News, NPR, etc.), the iPhone represents a large channel through which to distribute their existing content. The small incremental cost of expanding the distribution of Traditional Media’s core content, and the attractiveness of reaching an educated, affluent and tech-savvy audience, makes iPhone the perfect platform through which to serve news. Looking forward, the iPad creates an even greater opportunity to increase reach because its larger screen size works better works for newspaper and magazine layouts, as well as TV broadcast.
“A new survey by the Pew Research Center released Monday found more than a quarter of all American adults read news on their mobile.” –Pew research
This headline from the March 3rd edition of MobileMarketing Daily caught our attention. The headline is taken from the recently release Understanding The Participatory Newspaper Consumer which is a deep analysis of the publishing ecosystem. From our perspective as a mobile publishing company the most encouraging news for publishers is the degree to which younger readers – the readers newspaper publisher need to bring into their franchise – are using their mobile devices to access news and information where and when they want. This table taken from the study confirms that younger adults are much more likely to access news and information on their mobile than older adults – 43% adults under 50 expect to find at least some of news and information that they need on their mobiles.
We are not surprised by the importance of mobile as a trusted source of news and information for younger adults. The iPhone apps we have built for our publishing clients continue to drive double digit growth in new subscribers and page views. As important, app publishers are experiencing month over month growth in average number of articles read. This tells us that iPhone app subscribers have quickly adapted newspapers to fit their reading habits – they no longer need to be in front of the paper or online editions to access the news they want when they want it We expect to continued growth in on demand newspaper as more and more adults move to app enabled phones.
We remind our publishing clients that Apple app editions deliver a young readership – almost half of whom are under the age of 34 according to AdMob research.– and that these apps are the pipeline to their future franchise.
When most of us think of Apple app editions, we usually think of the iPhone as the most likely delivery device. But as Flurry research shows, the iTouch now delivers 41% of all Apple app user sessions
AdMob data above clearly demonstrates that the iTouch user profile is very different from the iPhone user profile – three quarters of iTouch users are below the age of 18 vv 15% of iPhone users. We believe that the iTouch cohort is of vital importance to publishers for two reasons.
1) Because they can and do access the App Store just as easily as iPhone users, they are a captive audience for news and information relevant to them
2) They are now locked in to satisfying their information and entertainment needs with proprietary Apple hardware and software. As they mature, the migration to the iPhone and iPad will be a natural and seamless progression for them.