Flipboard Founder Claims Apple News is 'a Product Living in the Past'

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Apple's mobile news platform has been accused of "living in the past" by the co-founder and head of rival news curation service Flipboard. The comments were made at Tuesday's Code Media event in California, where Flipboard CEO Mike McCue participated in an onstage Q&A regarding the future of content curation in the digital mobile space.

Now in its eighth year, the Flipboard iOS app organizes online articles into a more conducive reading format for mobile devices, and reaches around 100 million users a month. Comparatively, major rival Apple News – which Apple began shipping with iOS 9 – has at least 70 million monthly users.


"When you're an entrepreneur and you're competing with Apple, that's a pretty big deal," said McCue. "They're a partner and a competitor at the same time." McCue then went on to criticize Apple's mobile news platform for its lack of human curation.

"Apple News as a product is living in the past. There's no social sharing capability, no curation happening — it's algorithmic,” McCue said, adding: "It's another format that publishers have to adopt."

McCue also picked holes in Apple's walled garden approach to online content, comparing Flipboard's ad-friendly platform to Apple News's "closed ecosystem", which McCue called "a big deal for publishers". The suggestion here is that Flipboard benefits publishers by regularly redirecting readers to the publisher's site, where more ads are shown, whereas Apple News keeps users within the app's native display format with its attendant ad restrictions.

Despite the latter approach, Apple News does offer a built-in advertising platform that allows publishers to earn 100 percent of the revenue from the content they publish, or 70 percent of revenue from iAds inventory sold by Apple. The Apple News Format also lets publishers create custom editorial layouts geared towards their individual brands, allowing content to be viewed by millions of iPhone and iPad users in the way the publishers intended.

Top Rated Comments

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35 months ago
Translated: please buy me
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago
Number of times I checked Apple News today, 3.

Number of times I checked Flipboard today, 0.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago
don’t bite the hand that feeds you.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago

Wait a minute, are you telling me people actually use the terrible app and service that is known as Apple news? I don’t believe anyone would actually use it

Yeah, it’s almost like some people might have different opinions than you do.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago
next months news article - Apple copies flipboard and then bans their app from the store.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago
I used to love Flipboard when they first launched but they changed and a few updates later really didn't like it. And haven't used it or had it installed since.

Big fan of Apple News though, hope they bring it to the Mac.

no curation happening -- it's algorithmic," McCue said

The Spotlight tab is a curated section "From the Apple News Editors":

Spotlight
In the new Spotlight tab, Apple News editors will go deep on a topic that’s of interest at the moment, curating the best stories from sources you can trust. Spotlight is updated often, so check back regularly.

https://www.apple.com/uk/news/
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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