The Financial Times is not immune to the tablet bug – the British international business newspaper is one of the first in the country to release an iPad app, followed by The Sun and others. But unlike the others, the Financial Times approaches the “free app” strategy with a twist: the “free” is just a trial, the bait that will, hopefully, attract new subscription-based readers.
With a popular Apple app already in use, the Financial Times didn’t want to miss an opportunity to be a strategy leader and have its app ready for the day Samsung’s Galaxy Tab Android tablet hit the shelves. The newspaper announced its intention earlier in October, after news emerged that The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Gannett had plans to launching apps for the 7-inch, Android-based tablet as well.
This time, the Financial Times made a deal with Samsung, to have the “free app” sponsored through November till December 1st. Users who want to enjoy the Financial Times on their Galaxy tablets after the deadline, can still enjoy a “free” trial, but they have to register after reading three articles a month, and then can choose to subscribe for the paid version of the app after reading 10 articles. In other words, although these apps are free to download, they require FT subscription for unlimited access.