The popular and stylish news reading app will allow paid New York Times subscribers access to all Times content, including videos, blog posts and news stories.
NY Times Paywall Part of the Deal
So far, the New York Times has had some success in adding a paywall to its website. The Flipboard deal is the first time that content model has been added to a third party system, and no doubt will be a model for other publishers and websites.
Flipboard has partnered with other apps before, like Twitter and Facebook, but they are all free. As mentioned above, the only content from the New York Times that was available through Google Reader, Flipboard and other news aggregation apps was the top new section. That section will still be available through Flipboard for those who don't have a NY Times subscription.
Because the Times has different subscription packages, getting thewebsite content in Flipboard will depend on which package people havepurchased. Some will be able to view Times content from any device, andothers will be restricted to using their chosen ecosystem if they boughttheir subscription through a particular app. The point is, just becauseyou have a NY Times subscription doesn't mean you can access it fromany Flipboard app (your spouse's mobile phone or tablet, for example).
Flipboard is for iPhone, iPad, iTouch (3rd and 4th generation), Android, Amazon Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet.
Mobile is a Given; It's About Access
Flipboard has scored a major victory here, and it highlights how important mobile apps have become in consumer technology. However, even though more and more people access Web content through their mobile devices, there are still different app systems out there creating a divide among mobile users. In fact, Flipboard itself only became available to the Android platform on June 22, 2012. To make things even more confusing, Flipboard's iOS app now also features integration with the Google+ social network.
That's what we mean by saying mobile is a given, and that it's really about access. Companies know they have to address mobile users' needs, but the question then becomes which system to choose. In the enterprise, it's even trickier because there are added security and compatibility issues with other types of software.
The New York Times chose Flipboard, most likely because it is strongly associated with the iPad and Apple in general. The app was named Apple's app of the year in 2010, and finally became available on the iPhone in December 2011. Because Flipboard is no longer exclusive to the iOS system, this distinction matters a bit less, but it still shows how important it is to tailor content to specific groups even within the mobile sphere.
Are you a Pulse, Zite or Flipboard user? What do you like best about your chosen news reader app?