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Jonathan Joyce, technical director for Storm ID, discusses the iPad app unveiled today by the Scotsman.
I did not intend for the comments about RSS to become the headline - all a little too sensational for my liking too ;)
I can't say for sure where you are going with the app but it feels to me like you could do worse than build out what you have started on the digital section homepage which I think is the most successful part of the app.
If you get the rest of the digital presentation right, focus on the subscription flow and work on the social integration, and then get some support on the content curation, I think you could really have a strong offering here.
No doubt the analytics will demonstrate the value of the other sections but my feeling is that they are a distraction which undermines the app and to a certain extent the brand.
1) Yes, there will be reasons for it not being right - but as a user I'm afraid excuses don't wash - it is either worth a download or not. Should a user be concerned whether the budget for the build was right? And it is NOT right.
Yes it will be improved over time but you have to be careful when applying MVP and Ship It! approaches in the app world - unlike the web it takes time to deply an update and early reviews are very public.
2) Forget age - if you have an iPad you immediately consume content in new and better ways. The traditional newspaper page has been honed over many years in the print medium - it does NOT hold up on the iPad in the same way as it does not hold up on other digital channels. Would you have us turning pages, folding corners and filling out crosswords with a virtual pen on websites? Nope.
3) Utter nonsense I'm afraid. The Scotsman has the resources to do this right and I believe this can be done in Scotland as well as anywhere else. Not only that, Johnston Press have over 300 titles many of which could leverage the app if they consider that up front. Learn from the best out there and improve on it; set a vision for content production and consumption; reorganise resources and get on with it.
In the end it will cost less and be better. No excuses.
Thanks for your two pence - will we get another 797 pence to subscribe?! And where is the subscribe button? ;)
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