Europe's first 'personalised paper' rolls off the presses

Nov 16, 2009
Billed as Europe's first "personalised paper", "niiu", a newspaper tailored to readers' individual wishes and delivered to their door before 08:00 am, made its first appearance in Berlin on Monday.

Billed as Europe's first "personalised paper", "niiu", a newspaper tailored to readers' individual wishes and delivered to their door before 08:00 am, made its first appearance in Berlin on Monday.

Customers of the paper choose what topics they want to read about -- be it sport, politics, fashion or any from a wide choice -- and receive news only on their chosen subject collated together and delivered like any other paper.

Articles are pulled together from major German papers such as Handelsblatt, Bild and Tagesspiegel, foreign titles such as the International Herald Tribune or the New York Times, as well as major blogs and Internet news sources.

For the right to print their news, "niiu" pays a licence to these papers, which in turn reach a younger , as "niiu" is aimed mainly at students, who pay 1.20 euros (1.79 dollars) to get their news fix.

Non students are expected to stump up 1.80 euros.

The two German entrepreneurs who came up with the idea were delighted with their first day in business, having launched the concept in mid-October.

More than 1,000 people have already signed up on the Internet to receive the "niiu", said Wanja Oberhof, 23, one of the founders. "That has exceeded all our expectations," he told AFP.

"It's not just students, the interest is much wider," he added.

The pair hopes to be printing 5,000 copies in the next six months, first in Berlin before rolling it out nationwide.

At a time when newspapers globally are struggling with competition from Internet news sources, the founders acknowledge that "niiu" is a risky venture.

However, they said that young people were tired of trawling the web for news and would pay for the tailored service their paper offers.

"Our feedback has shown that people prefer to read from paper," said Oberhof.

Eventually, clients will be able to choose the length of the paper delivered -- for example, eight pages on a busy Monday morning but 60 pages on a Friday when there might be more time to read.

Initially, however, the paper consists of 16 pages.

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: Four questions about missing Malaysian plane answered

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Seattle paper may have digital future

Mar 06, 2009

Time is running out for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, whose publisher, the Hearst Corp., plans to close the money-losing newspaper if a buyer is not found by next week.

Probing question: Are print newspapers dying?

May 22, 2008

It's a morning routine repeated across the country: Before heading off to work, you sit down at the table with a cup of coffee, a bowl of cereal and the local paper spread out in front of you. But as the Internet becomes ...

Amazon's Kindle DX: Not the answer

Jul 16, 2009

I am holding in my hands a device that some think could be the salvation of the beleaguered newspaper industry. It's the Amazon Kindle DX, a large-screen version of Amazon's popular e-reader that's specifically ...

Future of newspapers is digital: Murdoch

May 28, 2009

News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch said on Thursday that the future of newspapers is digital, but it may be 10 to 15 years before readers go fully electronic.

Recommended for you

Four questions about missing Malaysian plane answered

9 hours ago

Travelers at Asian airports have asked questions about the March 8 disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. Here are some of them, followed by answers.

Under some LED bulbs whites aren't 'whiter than white'

Apr 18, 2014

For years, companies have been adding whiteners to laundry detergent, paints, plastics, paper and fabrics to make whites look "whiter than white," but now, with a switch away from incandescent and fluorescent lighting, different ...

Freight train industry to miss safety deadline

Apr 16, 2014

The U.S. freight railroad industry says only one-fifth of its track will be equipped with mandatory safety technology to prevent most collisions and derailments by the deadline set by Congress.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.

Health care site flagged in Heartbleed review

People with accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama's signature health care law are being told to change their passwords following an administration-wide review of the government's vulnerability to the ...