The Times, The Sunday Times Building Pay Wall, Launching Separate Sites

News Corp.‘s British arm, News International, announced that it would launch separate Web sites for The Times and The Sunday Times, as well as implementing a pay wall starting in June.

Access to the two sites will be free for a trial period for registered subscribers, and then cost £1 ($1.49) per day or £2 ($2.98) per week, with the weekly subscription including access to the electronic newspaper, as well as other applications. Seven-day print subscribers to The Times and The Sunday Times will receive free access to the Web sites.

News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks said:

These new sites, and the apps that will enhance the experience, reflect the identity of our titles and deliver a terrific experience for readers. We expect to attract a growing base of loyal customers that are committed and engaged with our titles. We are building on the excellence of our newspapers and offering digital access to our journalism at a price that everyone can afford.

At a defining moment for journalism, this is a crucial step toward making the business of news an economically exciting proposition. We are proud of our journalism and unashamed to say that we believe it has value.

This is just the start. The Times and The Sunday Times are the first of our four titles in the United Kingdom to move to this new approach. We will continue to develop our digital products and to invest and innovate for our customers.

The Sunday Times editor John Witherow added:

The launch of a dedicated Sunday Times Web site is a hugely significant moment for the paper. It will enable us to showcase our strengths in areas such as news, sport, business, style, travel, and culture and display the breadth of Britain’s biggest-selling quality newspaper.

For the first time, readers will have access to all of their favorite sections and writers. We will be introducing new digital features to enhance our coverage and encourage interactivity. Every day, readers will be able to talk to our writers and experts and view stunning photographs and graphics. Subscribers will be able to get this brand-new site, plus the enhanced Times site, seven days of the week, all for the price of a cup of coffee.

And The Times editor James Harding added:

The Times was founded to take advantage of new technology. Now we are leading the way again. Our new Web site — with a strong, clean design — will have all the values of the printed paper and all the versatility of digital media. We want people to do more than just read it — to be part of it.

We continue to invest in front-line journalism. We have more foreign correspondents than our rivals and continue to put reporters on new beats — last year we added an ocean correspondent and we just became the only British paper to have a Pentagon correspondent. And we want to match that with investment in innovation. will make the most of moving images, dynamic infographics, interactive comment, and personalized news feeds. The coming editions of The Times on phones, e-readers, tablets, and mobile devices will tell the most important and interesting stories in the newest ways. Our aim is to keep delivering The Times, but better.