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Independent weekly launches paid-for news app

A Yorkshire weekly has become the latest newspaper to attempt to build a new online revenue stream by launching a paid-for news app.

The Rotherham Advertiser has set up the app to run on the iPhone and iPad, which will comprise of regular RSS feeds in major categories from the paper’s website, with each story being geo-tagged and plotted on Google maps.

It is priced at £1.79 and gives access to four electronic editions of the Advertiser, which readers can re-subscribe to for further copies, and unlimited access to free titles the Rotherham Record and the Dearne Valley Weekender.

In June the paper, published by the independent Garnett Dickinson Group, believed it was the first in the UK to launch a BMD app, so users could search all announcements from the previous two months and post comments or photos.

Tiffany Barker, Garnett Dickinson publishing managing director, said: “This is the latest phase in the online project to increase the number of readers and advertisers.

“Our online solution is already producing a profit ahead of expectations.”

The app, which can be downloaded from the Apple store, offers full search and archive facilities, with access to article sharing with social networking sites.

Android versions of the apps are scheduled to be launched early in 2011.

The BMD app generates revenue for the publisher with an automatic add-on charge when the advert is placed.