Extra! Extra! iPad’s First Exclusive Newspaper

It’s here! The first ever “newspaper” created exclusively for the iPad was recently unveiled by media mogul Rupert Murdoch. Dubbed The Daily (not to be confused with Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show), the iPad app presents daily news in various forms, from written content to video and 360 degree photos to interactive polls, all wrapped up into one visually-appealing app. To make it even more enticing, the first two weeks are free.

The Daily is branding itself as a newspaper, but content and layout mirror that of a magazine – a multimedia magazine to be exact. For example, the cover of Feb. 4’s edition features one dominant photo of Cairo, Egypt, during a lull in protesting. Tap the photo, and it gives you a 360 degree look at the city. Many stories also feature videos, which double as static photos when not being watched, and some feature animated graphs, photo galleries, recent Tweets about the subject, interactive maps and the ability to be shared through Facebook, Twitter or e-mail.

According to Mashable, Murdoch has sunk about $30 million into The Daily so far, and each weeks’ editions are estimated to cost less than half a million dollars to produce. Add that up, and The Daily will cost about $53 million in its first year. Revenue is expected to come from subscriptions, which cost 99 cents a week or $39.99 for a year (savings of about $11.50), and advertisements.

The Daily’s website boasts the apps’ blend of characteristics from magazines, newspapers and the Web, and based on my early tinkering with the app, I have to admit, I’m impressed. I’ve always been an advocate for allowing users to choose the way they want to receive information, whether it’s through written articles, video, photos, graphs, etc., and having those options rolled up into a new, mobile, handheld experience is refreshing. That said, I’m also reveling in my free period. I’ll let you know how I feel once I have to pay for content I could get for free online.