New Globe and Mail iPhone app brings paper to your pocket

While the print media struggles to adapt to a world that’s already shifted to digital, one Toronto-based company is helping them move their content from the printed page to mobile devices. Spreed recently released version 1.1 of their Globe and Mail iPhone app, which takes Canada’s venerable national newspaper and adapts it to Apple’s wonderphone. The new version of the app, which I recently got to play with (and which is now available on the App Store) adds a loading screen, offline reading, and improves the cache of the phone for faster retrieval of stories. As an ardent news junkie, one thing I immediately noticed about the app is that it’s rock solid. Unlike the New York Times iphone app, Spreed’s app is robust and never freezes up and crashes.

But it’s not what’s under the hood that’s interesting about Spreed, though they’ve certainly done a good job of crafting a solid mobile news app. It’s their adaptation of print media to a new form in a smart way that’s most impressive.

“We took the approach of instead of a media company having to develop and deploy an app for their propert, we’ll create the app and then share ad revenue,” Spreed Director of Marketing Dave Coleman said.

“Spreed’s a full service business. There’s no need to hire a mobile team, because we already have that and we’ll do it for you” he said.

And with changes in the industry such as the Seattle PostIntelligencer going to an all-digital format, Spreed is excited to further integrate into the newspaper industry, Coleman added.

“We’re actively looking for content providers looking for a mobile solution,” he said.

Possible future innovations include enabling citizen journalism by using elements of the iphone such as the camera that allow average users to send breaking news to editors. Plans are also in the works to get the app on other mobile platforms.