New iPhone App from The Guardian Adopts Subscription Model

The Guardian expects its updated iPhone app to be approved this week, shifting from a one-time charge of £2.39 ($3.72) to a subscription model at £2.99 ($4.66) for six months or £3.99 ($6.21) for 12 months, as reported by paidContent, a sister company to the U.K. newspaper.

The figures above apply to users in the United Kingdom, as paidContent reported that The Guardian was disappointed by download figures in the United States and will offer a free app to be supported by ads placed via Apple iAds.

Speaking about the U.K. app, editor Janine Gibson told paidContent:

We’ve been consistently amazed by returning usage and levels of engagement in-app. It hasn’t tailed off at all.

We were struck by the consensus of requests for new features, but also the number of people who said they would pay more, and even the level they would be prepared to pay in exchange for these features.

Our aim is to see if we can convert the vast majority of our users in to the new app. If we don’t, we’ll have to look at the pricing. But I’ll be surprised if we don’t.