Apple: News app delivers the stories you want to read

Apple's new app promises a personalized experience as it takes on news readers from Google, Facebook and FlipBoard.

Max Taves Shara Tibken
Max Taves Staff Reporter
Max writes about venture capitalism and startups while seeking out the new new thing to come out of Silicon Valley. He joined CNET News from The Wall Street Journal, where he contributed stories on commercial real estate, architecture, big data and more. He's also written for LA Weekly, Slate and American Lawyer Media's The Recorder, where he covered legal battles in Silicon Valley. Max holds degrees from Georgetown University and Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.
Shara Tibken Former managing editor
Shara Tibken was a managing editor at CNET News, overseeing a team covering tech policy, EU tech, mobile and the digital divide. She previously covered mobile as a senior reporter at CNET and also wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. Shara is a native Midwesterner who still prefers "pop" over "soda."
2 min read

Apple said News keeps track of more than a million topics. James Martin/CNET

Apple is entering the news business--sort of.

At its annual Worldwide Developer Conference Monday in San Francisco, Apple unveiled News, an app intended to be a personalized digital magazine and newspaper viewer.

Silicon Valley wants to be your portal for reading the news, and Apple's announcement today at WWDC is just the latest by tech companies angling for a place in the sector, which drives a significant share of Internet traffic.

Earlier this month, Facebook released its Instant Articles, allowing nine media outlets to publish content directly to Facebook's iPhone app. Snapchat, for its part, has been trying to position itself as a new-gathering engine. Meanwhile, Twitter, Yahoo and Google have all reportedly eyed buying Flipboard, a direct competitor of Apple News because the app already provides its 65 million users with a list of curated media content.

Apple didn't say when the News app will be available or what will become of its existing -- and unpopular -- news-reading app, Newsstand. Before the keynote on Monday, it was reported that Apple plans to kill off Newsstand.

Apple did say it's launching first in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. Apple is partnering with several content providers including Conde Nast and The New York Times.

Though it doesn't yet have a release date, the company isn't trying to dampen enthusiasm.

"We think there's never been a more beautiful mobile reading experience," said Apple exec Susan Prescott. "We can't wait to get it in your hands."

Prescott said the app will allow users to track more than a million topics, including content from blogs, allowing them to tailor the news they want to read. Apple also highlighted its increasing focus on security.

"Unlike just about any other news aggregation service we're aware of on the planet, News is designed from the ground up focused on your privacy," said Craig Federighi, Apple senior vice president of software engineering.

Update, 1 p.m. PT: Adds background.