Facebook and Twitter have already been in the eye of the storm for all the fake news that has been doing the rounds on the two platforms. It’s not surprising then that Apple has decided to play it safe by acquiring Texture, a digital magazine subscription service that offers its US-based users unlimited access to all their favourite titles for a monthly subscription, much like Netflix. The value of the deal remains undisclosed.
A virtual newsstand, Texture is owned by Next Issue Media, which is backed by magazine publishers including biggies like Meredith, Hearst, Conde Nast, News Corp, Time Inc, and Rogers Communications. Launched in 2010, Texture gives users access to over 200 of the best magazines from across the world. The iOS App Store editorial team in 2016 chose it for its annual “Best Of” list which highlights the best and most innovative games and apps on iOS.
In a statement published by Apple, the company shared comments from the CEO of Next Issue Media/Texture, John Loughlin. John says, “I’m thrilled that Next Issue Media, and its award-winning Texture app, are being acquired by Apple. The Texture team and its current owners, Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, Rogers Media and KKR, could not be more pleased or excited with this development. We could not imagine a better home or future for the service.”
Apple has had its own newsstand product before, which didn’t take off. The company later killed the product and wrapped it into Apple News, a news aggregator app that allows users to get news and even subscribe to certain magazines. Texture is its first acquisition in the magazine publishing sector.
In 2014, Apple acquired BookLamp, with the intention of using its tech and talent to help improve its iBooks service. Other similar acquisitions that Apple has made in the past include Beats for Apple Music in 2014 so it could acquire a larger share in the live music streaming market, especially against players like Pandora and Spotify. The company also acquired Shazam in 2017 to fortify its Apple Music game against Spotify.
Given the uproar over fake news and how biggies like Facebook and Twitter have come under the scanner for it, Apple’s acquisition can be seen as a precautionary measure to ensure quality journalism and news.
Eddy Cue, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services echoed the same, “We’re excited Texture will join Apple, along with an impressive catalogue of magazines from many of the world’s leading publishers. We are committed to quality journalism from trusted sources and allowing magazines to keep producing beautifully designed and engaging stories for users.”