LeWeb 2011: Flipboard has no plans for Android

by Doug Drinkwater

December 7 2011

Paris, France -- Flipboard founder Mike McCue cites Apple as an ‘inspiration’ but says that the news aggregating service has no plans as of yet to support Android tablets.

McCue said that Flipboard was born out his stint at Netscape in the mid-1990s, where he saw that magazines looked a lot better than traditional websites.

He said that since its launch last year, Flipboard's iPad app has been downloaded around 4.5 million times, meaning that at about one in every ten iPad users have the Flipboard app, according to his own estimate.

Despite the probing of LeWeb founder Loic Le Meur, McCue said that Flipboard has no plans to support Android tablets in the near future.

“There aren’t that many Android tablets yet, but that is changing, and the Kindle Fire a good example of that. For Flipboard, we just picked a platform and the iPad has allowed us to build something amazing.”

McCue also spent time presenting Flipboard’s new iPhone app, which has just been launched.

The app works by presenting publication ‘cards’, rather than pages, and also features a new way of navigation. Whilst the iPad app works by swiping horizontally, users have to swipe vertically.

“We put a lot of time and design into this, and the decision to change wasn’t taken lightly”, said McCue, who added that the new way of navigation may prevent users from dropping their phone.

With the launch of the iPhone app, Flipboard has launched a new feature, called Cover Stories, which allows users to view the top stories from their preferred news categories on a page-by-page basis.

McCue said that this feature, which can support full-screen articles or 500px full-screen images, will soon come to the iPad app.

Interestingly, McCue said that the full page adverts offered through Flipboard allows advertisers to generate 10/15 times the revenue they would sell traditional print adverts for. “Flipboard is re-imagining online advertising.”

Flipboard has now partnered with 60 publications around the world and has recently integrated local content for Flipboard users in France and China.

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