UK: UPDAY headhunts Execs from Guardian and ITV
Axel Springer and Samsung-backed news platform, UPDAY, has underlined its ambitions in the UK with two senior appointments ahead of a number of important product announcements in the coming weeks.
Robin Hough has been appointed managing director at upday, where he will oversee the publishing, management and commercial strategy for the United Kingdom. Previously head of The Guardian’s Media & Tech Network, Robin has more than a decade’s experience working in global media and publishing, with a specialism in building sector-leading editorial and commercial platforms, teams and campaigns. His work has won a number of industry awards including a D&AD Pencil, a British Media Award for Content Team of the Year, a Webby and a British Animation Award.
Robin is joined by Tom McArthur, upday’s new head of editorial, whose role will consist of overseeing the UK editorial strategy and managing the dedicated team of upday journalists curating market-specific content. With nine years’ digital experience as a journalist and editor, Tom joins upday from ITV News, where he was digital producer for the channel’s award-winning website. Previous roles include MSN and NBC News, specialising in breaking news.
Both occupying newly created roles, Robin and Tom will spearhead growth, product development and lead the now seven-strong London-based UK upday team.
upday managing director, Robin Hough says: “upday is a game-changer for news consumption and I’m delighted to join the UK team ahead of further exciting developments for the platform. Tom’s appointment as head of editorial in the UK is invaluable for ensuring our UK audience is consistently receiving high quality, relevant and insightful breaking news content.”
Launch in Barcelona
upday, an aggregated news content platform of Axel Springer is pre-installed on the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 edge devices for customers in France, Germany, Poland and the UK. upday is integrated seamlessly into the user experience of the new smartphones – just one right swipe on home screen opens the news service. The full service rollout follows a successful beta launch in Germany and Poland last year, which saw unprecedented user engagement.
Joint Press Release: Springer and Samsung Launch UPDAY for The new Galaxy S7 and S7 edge.
What is upday?
upday (free download: http://upday.com/App) is a personalised news service, built and run by Axel Springer, for Samsung flagship smartphones across Europe. It currently sources news from 2,200 top publications within Germany, the UK, France and Poland.
upday delivers news in two sections: Top News, which is curated by our editorial teams and highlights between six and eight of the day’s most relevant stories at any one time, and My News, which allows the user to choose the subjects they are most interested in and create a personal feed of stories. My News also learns what the user wants to see more of, while our journalists regularly add editor’s picks to the feed, to ensure the most relevant stories always surface.
What is special about upday?
We combine leading technology with journalism in a way no other news aggregator does. upday uses teams of experienced journalists to curate the day’s news and provide digestible summaries in a friendly and easy to understand way. But while the service has its own journalistic voice, upday is mainly a publisher platform. We always link directly to our sources’ stories, giving the publishers more reach to monetize as well as anonymous usage data to analyse how their content is performing. upday’s card-based interface is also uniquely designed for a great mobile user experience. Easy and fun to use, it is built around full-screen displays of each story, and one simple swipe takes the user to the next.
Easy to use:
What makes upday tick?
Samsung — a strong partner
upday is a subsidiary of Axel Springer SE and the first project launched as part of an extensive partnership between Axel Springer and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd to develop new digital media formats for European users. Axel Springer and Samsung started their partnership in September 2015.
Samsung is one of the biggest manufacturers of consumer electronics and commands a 34% market share of the UK smartphone market. upday has started its journey in many flagship Samsung devices as an exclusive partner, providing a prominent news service on the phones’ second home screen that integrates seamlessly into the mobile user’s experience.
“The play between the algo and the human“
upday connects mobile users with relevant content that they would not otherwise find on their own, combining traditional journalistic values and technology in a way that yields superior results. With upday you no longer have to spend so much time looking around different websites and apps for the really relevant information.
American analyst Ken Doctor described this union in these words:
“The pinball effect of smart tech and smart editors will give upday its value to readers. While aggregators from Google to News Republic rely on the almighty algorithm, it’s the play between the algo and the human that will tell us whether Springer has really broken new ground here.”
We tend to agree. Trained with the criteria a traditional news desk would use, our algorithms mix a set of relevant news with content from personal fields of interest, varying length and formats. They also strategically include surprising and inspiring content, playing on human curiosity, and the way the user interacts with this content determines what’s produced the future. upday is thus the exact opposite of the digital age’s much-maligned filter bubble, which draws users further and further into a tunnel of information streams where conforming opinions and themes perpetuate themselves.
upday is an innovative advertising platform
upday does not run banner advertising that has to be clicked away tediously, but includes card-based ads that integrate seamlessly into the user experience. Only certain cards in the overall flow of content can be adcards, and we ensure that their content is relevant to the profile of each respective user, ensuring the small amount of advertising users do see is actually interesting to them.
upday plans to launch advertising sales in June, but initial talks with the advertising industry have already shown that our concept is well-received: You can’t block advertising in upday, and viewability is by definition 100%, and the average dwell time among users is much higher than what is common in conventional news apps.
At scale, directly generated user data will efficiently address target groups, making upday the ideal advertising platform for brands who wish to deliver their messages at a particular time and in the appropriate place within the right editorial environment, where users are genuinely receptive to information and messages, and inspired by them instead of irritated.
upday is also well-suited to native advertising and content marketing. Brands can easily present commercial content on selected cards (which will of course be clearly marked as advertising).
Press Contact upday:
Mobile: +49 151 1496 5810
upday GmbH & Co. KG | Axel-Springer-Str. 65 | 10888 Berlin |
Amtsgericht Charlottenburg, HRB 155247 B
Geschäftsführer: Peter Würtenberger, Daniel Keller
A company of Axel Springer SE