What is it?
Apple News is a pre-installed app on every device running iOS9 or later.
Apple News collates and delivers text-based, still and moving image reports from a wide range of publishers and delivers a selection of news to consumers, depending on the criteria each reader has set for receiving it.
So it’s a curating and publishing platform that draws on a wide range of sources of news and information. Human curators sift content and promote what they consider outstanding.
Apple News Publisher lets media organisations (or anyone) publish on the format. It’s available currently to publishers in the US, UK and Australia.
Should you use it?
But then, Facebook and Google would also like to be the worldwide home of news publishing.
The big questions: will one or other become dominant; will one or more fade away; or will they coexist – remain to be answered.
Apple has failed once before in this area. It withdrew its Newsstand platform, a forerunner of News. Some commentators think readers will ignore News as they did Newsstand
Here are three potential benefits Apple News Publisher could bring you
The arguments for choosing to publish here relate to the massive audience Apple News could bring to your content.
It could also bring you revenue. The deal is, if you sell ads to your Apple News channel, you get all the revenue, if you rely on Apple to sell ads for you, you keep 70% of the revenue.
In the early days of the platform publishers complained that they couldn’t get data on their readers.
Apple seems to have addressed that concern, and the video linked to later details how data can be accessed and exported.
How do you publish on it?
There are also a couple of videos to check out, but I can’t embed them here so you’ll have to follow the links:
Getting published in Apple News. Covers how to get set up and start publishing
Using Apple News Format builds on the first video with detail on really good design, including replicating a glossy print mag on the platform
Here’s the process for getting published in more detail
A summary of the steps involved:
- Sign in with your Apple account (create one if necessary)
- Enter your publisher information
- Name and set up your channel (you’ll be published in your own channel, and you can have more than one)
- Choose or create your logo and cover image
- Choose how to publish, either via Apple’s bespoke News Publisher or via an RSS feed from your WordPress (or other) site
- Accept terms and conditions
- Wait to have your application approved
- Submit sample articles for final approval
You’ll find a comprehensive guide to becoming an Apple News publisher from Social Media Examiner here
You do need some technical know-how to fulfil Apple’s requirements. You can use the outline below to decide whether you know enough about coding to do this yourself, or if you need tech help. Hopefully the links will point you to what help you need.
Here are a couple of points were you could come unstuck
Choosing/creating your logo
Apple specifies your logo must be a PNG using one line of text with a transparent background. Fail to follow the detailed guidelines exactly and your application will be rejected.
You can create a suitable logo on InDesign.
If you don’t have access to it, you can use a free trial version here.
This video shows you how to create a logo with a transparent background:
Setting up your Apple News format or providing an RSS feed
Publishing in Apple News format means all your articles are optimised for whatever device they are being viewed on. Here’s Apple’s guide
If you choose the simpler option of creating an RSS feed from your site, you can’t just take the RSS feed url, unless it is already correctly configured. Apple wants a url feed with a number of specifications. Their requirements are here
WordPress plug-in for publishing to Apple News
With this plug-in, and an approved channel on News Publisher, you can publish some or all of your stories to Apple News from your WordPress site
Download the Publish to Apple News plugin
(see Chapter 8 of Multimedia Journalism for how to do that)
Once the plugin is installed, click on the Apple News tab on your dashboard and your articles will be listed.
Hover over one and you get a publish option. Click it and it goes to Apple News. So you can direct exactly the articles you want to your Apple channel