CNN has just announced that it was acquiring Zite, a digital magazine developer. CNN intends to keep Zite as a separate business and while it is not completely clear what CNN will do with it, it is evident that CNN takes digital media much more seriously than most established companies. The current CNN app is already one of the most popular news app for mobile devices, and the addition of Zite will probably end up strengthening CNN’s branded offering.CNN will use its might to turn Zite into a distribution platform with a possible shared-revenue advertising deal for 3rd party publishers. Zite is a personalized iPad magazine that is claimed to “learn” about your usage pattern and get better at personalizing your news. By acquiring Zite, CNN also gets access to Zite’s algorithms, which will improve CNN’s powerful website too. At least, that’s the theory.
“Zite represents the next generation of content discovery and personalized publishing and CNN wants to help lead in that space. We think we can advance the industry in a meaningful way that helps content creators grow their businesses while growing the distribution of a product that people already love. Zite’s technology can also be used to help CNN’s Websites and apps serve more personalized content, making our current digital services even better.” (KC Estenson, general manager of CNN Digital)
At the moment Zite is only available on iPad.