It was recently reported that news content brings in 7% of of Apple Newsstand’s monthly gross of roughly $70,000 – while this doesn’t seem like much, a newer study reveals that users of mobile news apps now read more articles and long-form content than regular computer users.
The January Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism found that when searching for news stories, 33% of users went directly to the news outlets website, while using a desktop or a mobile device, while 38% of tablet users did the same. This suggests that readers go to sources they have existing knowledge of. In general, 54% of consumers in the US used the web to read the news, whether on a desktop or mobile device, and most those surveyed tend to mix it up – i.e. combine web-based formats when reading stories. Of those who read content on a desktop, 34% also read articles on their smartphones, and 17% used a tablet device. Those using both tablets and smartphones accounted for 27% of consumers in the study, and 5% of users get on all three.
An interesting facet of the study concerns the general ineffectiveness of Facebook and Twitter regarding the relaying of news links. Recent reports have shown that both social networks were not particularly integral in the driving of new stories, and now data shows that only 8% and 3% of tablet uses follow links through Facebook and Twitter respectively. As for Facebook, this trend stands in contrast to its effectiveness in product marketing, as 92% of users queried in the Global Trust and Advertising Survey state that they would buy a product based on a friend’s recommendation. It would seem that users don’t trust the social network so much when it comes to news.