USA Today iPad App Moving to Subscription Model

Gannett CEO Craig Dubow announced during the media company’s first-quarter earnings call that the USA Today iPad app will no longer be available free-of-charge and move to a subscription-based model following the expiration of the exclusive sponsorship from Courtyard by Marriott July 4, paidContent reported.

The app has been downloaded about 175,000 times, and it reached No. 4 in the news category, according to paidContent, which added that Dubow did not offer details on the conversion of the iPad app, nor did he mention if the newspaper’s iPhone app would move to a subscription-based model, as well.

Dubow said, as reported by paidContent:

Keep in mind, we’re only in this two weeks. The download numbers are encouraging. But it’s hard to say what impact the subscription will have on growth of the app. We’re going to have to get a good read as to whether it’s replacing print subs or not. The more people see how beautiful it is, I expect we’re going to see continued growth for similar numbers. I believe Apple is covering the (iPad) supply issue, but I wouldn’t comment regarding what this means for the Kindle version; the two are different. I don’t think the Kindle version has the traction that we have on the other side. We see where all this headed. David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.