Apple: we’ve been underestimating the number of News readers

Apple’s News app has attracted more than 100 publishing partners worldwide since launching last September, but neither media companies nor Apple know how many people are reading, according to The Wall Street Journal (

News compiles articles you've expressed interest in from several sites.  Stories are pulled from a range of sources, from top news organizations to indie publications. Stories are chosen for you based on what you like to read. Apple says that the more you use News, the better it gets at picking out just what you’ll want to see. Apple allows publishers to keep 100% of revenue when they sell their own ads into the app; they keep 70% of ad revenue if Apple sells ads on their behalf.

However, Apple has mistakenly has been underestimating the number of readers using the News app since its launch, and passing that inaccurate information on to publishers, according to the WSJ.

Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, told the publication that the company missed the error as it focused on other aspects of the product. The company didn’t explain how the problem occurred or say exactly when it might be rectified.

“We’re in the process of fixing that now, but our numbers are lower than reality,” he told the WSJ. “We don’t know what the right number is,” but he added that it was better to undercount than overcount traffic.

At the present time, most content in Apple News is pulled from RSS feeds. Those 70 publishers that Cook referred to have had access to the ability to create their own customized layouts. Interestingly, Apple's News API provides a way for specific content management systems such as WordPress and Drupal to submit articles to News upon publication on the original host.