Newsstand launches for iPhone and iPad

Apple released version five of its iOS operating system Wednesday afternoon, which includes the new Newsstand feature that helps users collect and organize apps for newspapers and magazines.

Newsstand collects (some of) your news apps in a virtual bookshelf.

So far, the Newsstand store is dominated by magazines, including major titles like Wired, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Car and Driver and Cosmopolitan. A few English-language newspapers, including The San Francisco Chronicle, The Oklahoman and The Guardian, have Newsstand apps available.

Newsstand pretty much functions as expected, though it seems a little confusing, at least in this early phase, to have two different places for news apps. The iTunes store still has the "news" category containing all news apps, only a few of which have also been set up as Newsstand apps. (For iPad, there are 4,331 news apps, only 136 of them currently work with Newsstand.)

That said, iOS 5 is only a few hours old. It will likely take weeks for most users to download it and for most news organizations to decide whether to update their apps to use the Newsstand.

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    Jeff Sonderman

    Jeff Sonderman is the deputy director of the American Press Institute, helping to lead its use of research, tools, events, and strategic insights to advance and sustain journalism.

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