Sony CEO Sir Howard Stringer and Wall Street Journal managing editor Robert Thomson on Thursday announced a partnership between Sony and Dow Jones & Company to offer the Journal and New York Post on Sony's new Daily Edition Reader e-book reader.
The announcement comes seven months after The New York Times Co. announced a deal with Amazon for its Kindle family of e-readers, drawing a line in the sand between two of the nation's most read daily newspapers.
"Our announcement, together with Dow Jones, to have The Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and a variety of other exclusive Dow Jones information available wirelessly on the Reader Daily Edition underscores our belief in the critical value of content, and the devices that can deliver it with ease and integrity to users everywhere."
Users of the 7-inch, $399 resistive touchscreen Daily Edition e-reader will receive wireless 3G delivery of content from theJournal, Post and MarketWatch. It's also the first digital foray for the New York Post, a popular New York City tabloid newspaper.
The publishers said they will jointly market the devices with Sony.
The decision to exclusively partner is a curious one. While it makes sense from a financial standpoint, the moves make it nearly impossible for a consumer who reads both papers (highly likely) to read their content on a single e-reader.
It also excludes that content from other e-readers, such as the Barnes & Noble Nook and Plastic Logic Que.
Furthermore, the moves make e-readers a more difficult technology to adopt compared to a non e-Ink device such as Apple's iPod touch, which has free applications for both the Times and the Journal, as well as several other popular papers and news outlets such as USA Today, Financial Times, Bloomberg, CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC, Time and Newsweek.
The companies said the content will be available soon in Sony's Reader Store.
Prices are as follows:
- The Wall Street Journal digital edition will be delivered wirelessly each morning for $14.99 per month.
- The Wall Street Journal PLUS: The daily newspaper plus a supplementary bulletin delivery after the close of the markets, will cost $19.99 per month.
- MarketWatch Today: A digest of the day's most important feature stories and analysis from MarketWatch.com, it will cost $10.99 per month.
- New York Post: Daily news, gossip and sports will cost $9.99 per month.
The Wall Street Journal digital edition and MarketWatch Today will be available in the next few days. The Wall Street Journal PLUS and New York Post will be available in January.
Free 14-day trials are available for all of the packages.