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NEW YORK (
TheStreet) -- Rupert Murdoch and his
News Corp.(NWS - Get Report) empire aren't quite finished trying to distribute electronic versions of the company's newspapers on tablet computers.
yesterday's announcement of the Dec. 15 closure of
The Daily, News Corp.'s 10-month-old
Apple(AAPL - Get Report) iPad-only newspaper experiment,
The Times of Londonsays the media baron is now offering deals combining the electronic version of that daily paper along with
Google(GOOG - Get Report) Nexus 7 Android tablets.
Readers who agree to an 18-month electronic subscription of the
The Times of London can buy a 32-gigabyte Nexus 7 tablet for 50 pounds ($81), a quarter of the retail price.
As for the software, News Corp. is selling e-subscriptions (called a Digital Pack) for 4 pounds a week. Over a 78-week period, that comes to 312 pounds just for the e-newspaper. Add 50 pounds for the tablet and the total rises to 362 pounds.
A Digital Pack subscription allows customers to read the digital version of
The Times on any computer, tablet or smartphone.
The Daily, where Apple served as the newspaper's sole distribution arm, The Times of London/Nexus 7 deal enables News Corp. to distribute and profit from the sale of both the digital software (the news) and the hardware (the tablet) to read it on.
It's estimated that News Corp. spent at least $80 million on
The Daily. Despite some compelling graphics and 360-degree photos, it never really caught on. Maybe that's because News Corp. limited readership to iPad owners.
Offering the e-newspaper in other formats -- to news-hungry readers on all personal computers, tablets and smartphones -- might have kept the publication alive.
-- Written by Gary Krakow in New York.
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