Flipboard has announced that it has purchased news reader Zite from CNN for $60M, according to CNN Money. By doing so, Flipboard hopes to go from the best-looking web magazine to the smartest as well. If you are not familiar with Zite, it is a news reading app that learns from what you read, but at the same time still let you discover new content. This is often a thin line that news algorithm have to virtually walk: when they stick too much with what people like, they may miss hot and unusual news. If they don’t use personalization enough, they risk boring the users.
CNN is not abandoning Zite, which it acquired in 2011: the media giant will continue to partner with Flipboard to promote CNN content on Flipboard’s massive audience. From CNN’s point of view, it is in fact going to reach “a new audience” with this partnership. They also assure users that CNN is “invested in the long term success of Flipboard.”
In fact, CNN is launching 30 CNN channels, but the three are more prominent than the rest: Fareed Zakaria’s GPS Daily, The Lead with Jake Tapper and John King’s Go “Inside Politics”. As a group, it covers some of the most sought-after issues, and CNN will probably tweak the programming to please the Flipboard crowd.
If you are not familiar with Flipboard, it is a news-reading app that has gained fame and growth by making news reading beautiful and extremely easy to “flip through”. Often imitated but never equaled, Flipboard continues to ride its momentum. Zite has been made available on iPhone, Android and even Google glass.
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