Despite the fact that the Apple iPad has not yet been released in Australia, Rupert Murdoch is openly promoting it in his Australian publications, including The Australian and Daily Telegraph. He says that in the U.S. the iPad is already a big success with The Wall Street Journal, when compared to Amazon’s Kindle.
He claims that the iPad is proving very successful as an e-reader. The comments were made during a conference call to discuss the earnings of his companies.
Murdoch revealed that 64,000 people have already subscribed to The Wall Street Journal in the first month; it’s also significantly more profitable than the same subscription on the Kindle, he said. Unlike Amazon’s insistence on a revenue split, the WSJ keeps all of the nearly A$20 it costs for a month of reading.
The number didn’t explicitly track those who have passed their free trial periods and are paying for the subscription, although the adoption rate is 20 times higher than just 3,200 in the first week.
Murdoch has been one of the staunchest supporters of the iPad as a means of transitioning from print to digital, and during the call said it would “lead a revolution” in how users access all kinds of content, not just text.
On the negative side the WSJ has drawn criticism from early iPad owners as subscription rates are higher than for the print version, which carry considerably higher manufacturing costs due to printing presses and distribution.
A web-only subscription to the paper costs $9 per month.