Peter Kafka

Rupert Murdoch's The (iPad) Daily gets a launch date - sort of

December 17, 2010: 11:06 AM ET

A sister publication sets the week of Jan. 17 for the tablet-only newspaper's debut

Murdoch. Credit: World Economic Forum

The most-talked about daily newspaper this year -- indeed, the only newspaper that seems to be generating any buzz -- is The Daily, the semi-secret iPad publication being assembled with an all-star cast of editors on the 26th floor of the News Corp.'s (NWS) Manhattan skyscraper for Australian-born press baron Rupert Murdoch.

When will we get to read it? November, according to The Guardian. December, according to others. Now Peter Kafka, who covers media matters for All Things Digital -- another Murdoch publication -- cites "multiple sources" who tell him that The Daily is launching the week of Jan. 17.

"Given that News Corp. has hired dozens of blabby journalists for The Daily, and interviewed many more," he writes, "lots of other details about the app/service have leaked out already: It will come out daily, it will sell for 99 cents a week, it will use lots of video, it will have cool multimedia bells and whistles, including some of kind 3-D effect that lots of people are very excited about. And Apple CEO Steve Jobs may or may not participate in a launch event.

"Most important for other media companies: The Daily is supposed to use a new 'push' subscription feature from Apple, where iTunes automatically bills customers on a weekly or monthly basis, and a new edition shows up on customers' iPads every morning."

Apple (AAPL) has still not come to terms with magazine publishers -- including Time Inc. (TWX), which owns Fortune -- that would also like to see their publications pushed to the iPad, but insist on access to subscriber data that Steve Jobs doesn't want to share.

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[Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter @philiped]

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