Tablets may allow a 're-set' for news industry: News Corp.

Tablet computers such as Apple's iPad may allow the news industry a "re-set" and to start charging for content after years of giving it away for free, a senior News Corp. executive said Friday.

News Corp. chief digital officer Jon Miller also said it was too early to make any judgements about the experiment of News Corp.'s The Times with a paid website but charging online readers was "an idea whose time has come."

"A year ago, we were pretty out front with the idea that content has value," Miller told an audience of top technology and media executives at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference here.

Now, he said, "it's accepted at a variety of levels. It's more about how it gets done."

News Corp.'s Wall Street Journal already charges a subscription fee for full access to WSJ.com and News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch has said he eventually plans to charge online readers of all of the titles in his newspaper stable.

"Dual revenue streams are good businesses," Miller said of a combination of subscription fees and online advertising.

Miller said tablet computers such as the iPad offer great opportunities for news organizations to develop paid applications.

"You see apps being consumed that are paid-for apps," he said.

"I think we're seeing a fundamental shift in where content is consumed and it's on to these kinds of devices," he said. "These tablets are heavy media consumption devices, much more than the Web by itself and even smartphones."

He said the iPad and other tablets being developed offer "very media rich experiences that I think do allow a re-set, perhaps a do-over for the media industry, a chance to get it right."

Consumers need to understand that "there is investment being made in this content," the News Corp. executive said.

Miller declined to give specifics when asked about the number of paid subscribers to Britain's The Times, but said they were "about in line" with what was expected.

"It is early," he said. "It's just a few weeks in."

He pointed to The Wall Street Journal as a newspaper that is successfully charging Web readers and noted that Britain's Financial Times also does so and that The New York Times plans to start charging at the beginning of next year.

"The Wall Street Journal has been in a paid environment for a long time," he said. "There's over a million digital subscribers to The Wall Street Journal in various forms."

Miller acknowledged that erecting a pay barrier around a newspaper website did result in some loss of readership.

"You lose unique visitors when you do that, unquestionably," he said, but they tend to be those who "dip in and dip out."

"What you do retain are your more core users," he said.

Miller said charging online may not be the way to go for every news outlet.

"I think you do need to have the fortitude to stay the course because you're converting behaviour and the hardest thing to change in the world, one of the hardest things, is consumer behaviour and expectations," he said.

"I don't know that every company can do it," Miller said. "You have to have the will and the wherewithal to do it. News Corp. has both. It certainly has the financial capability of staying the course."

News
i100
News
people Emma Watson addresses celebrity nude photo leak
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
News
peopleHis band Survivor was due to resume touring this month
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
Arts and Entertainment
Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese and DiCaprio, at an awards show in 2010
filmsAll just to promote a new casino
News
i100
News
In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
science
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashionModel of the moment shoots for first time with catwalk veteran
News
i100
Sport
Tom Cleverley
footballLoan move comes 17 hours after close of transfer window
Sport
Alexis Sanchez, Radamel Falcao, Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli
footballRadamel Falcao and Diego Costa head record £835m influx
Life and Style
fashionAngelina Jolie's wedding dressed revealed
News
Boris Johnson may be manoeuvring to succeed David Cameron
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Front-Office Developer (C#, .NET, Java, AI)

    £40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Front-Office D...

    C# Software Engineer (ASP.NET, C#, CSS, Java Script, JQuery)

    £40000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits, Training & Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# S...

    Systems Administrator (SharePoint) - Central London - £36,500

    £35000 - £36500 per annum: Ashdown Group: Systems Administrator (SharePoint) -...

    Derivatives Risk Commodities Business Analyst /Market Risk

    £600 - £800 per day: Harrington Starr: Derivatives Risk Commodities Business A...

    Day In a Page

    Stolen youth: Younger blood can reverse many of the effects of ageing

    Stolen youth

    Younger blood can reverse many of the effects of ageing
    Bob Willoughby: Hollywood's first behind the scenes photographer

    Bob Willoughby: The reel deal

    He was the photographer who brought documentary photojournalism to Hollywood, changing the way film stars would be portrayed for ever
    Angelina Jolie's wedding dress: made by Versace, designed by her children

    Made by Versace, designed by her children

    Angelina Jolie's wedding dressed revealed
    Anyone for pulled chicken?

    Pulling chicks

    Pulled pork has gone from being a US barbecue secret to a regular on supermarket shelves. Now KFC is trying to tempt us with a chicken version
    'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

    'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

    US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
    Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

    A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

    Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
    Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

    James Frey's literary treasure hunt

    Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
    Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

    Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

    What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
    Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

    Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

    Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
    Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

    The big names to look for this fashion week

    This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
    Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

    'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

    Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
    Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

    Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

    Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
    Al Pacino wows Venice

    Al Pacino wows Venice

    Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
    Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

    Neil Lawson Baker interview

    ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband