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The Times for iPad : The Future of Digital Journalism ?

The Times for iPad : The Future of Digital Journalism ?

It was suggested that devices like the iPad could see the end of the traditional newspaper yet just two days after the International iPad release I am sitting back enjoying the very latest edition of The Times via a rather sleek subscription based version for the iPad.

A month’s worth (or 28 days to be precise) of newspapers come in at just ?9.99 which compared to getting the news for free might sound expensive but compare it to buying the printed version of the paper and it is a very different story.

Perhaps The Times are taking a risk with dipping their toe in the water of paid content. Other major UK newspapers have punctuated their commitment to free content but I am sure they are all watching The Times App with great interest.

The iPad version of The Times is stunning and is remarkably like the traditional newspaper in terms of both look and reading experience. The words are vibrant on the screen, easy to read and effortless to navigate. The Times for iPad simply offers all the benefits of a newspaper without the hassle of recycling.

Video Content

It seems obvious but the first time you see a video appear in even a digitised version of the traditional newspaper layout it is both a little shocking and positively exciting. A number of articles feature a a short video piece with video being streamed i.e. not downloaded as part of the paper.

Although this means the video content isn’t available offline (with the rest of the downloaded paper) it does save on bandwidth if you are downloading the latest edition over 3G. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to assertion the download size of each edition of the paper but it downloaded quickly over wifi and each edition is cached for reading offline.


The Times really have packed the digital version of their newspaper with content, this even includes a number if advertisements. When it comes down to images the digital version offers an additional bonus. Instead of just single photos many of the articles contain a gallery of images. Simply flick an image (as you would for turning a page) to view the various images in the gallery.

Overall The Times for iPad is a joy to read and exceptionally easy to navigate. click on an article and the app quickly scrolls to that piece with a motion a much like the old printing press process.

If it is negatives you want then perhaps the lack of accessibility options in that you can’t change the size of the font or the inability to bookmark items might make the list. Over all though this feels like a polished app that has been in development for sometime.

The Times iPad edition has raised the bar for digital news content. The latest news, galleries and even video make reading the news like something from a scifi film. I just wonder where it goes from here. It is very exciting.

The Times digital edition is definitely worth even a 28 day trial, although personally speaking I am not sure I can afford this on a monthly basis. I have decided to give the application 4/5 based on the fact you have to re-download the app every 28 days to renew the subscription. There is no way to do this in app like there are with other digital content magazines.

I wonder how long it will be before the other newspapers come to ipad ? We would love to hear your opinions on both The Times application and on the paid content debate.

Download The Times for iPad (iTunes Link).

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