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Apple releases grip on fancy Apple News formats

Apple has opened up its fledgling Apple News app to all publishers, meaning users will be able to enjoy media-rich experiences from more sources.

Since its launch in iOS 9, patrons of the personalised service have been limited to seeing enhanced content from Apple’s chosen partners.

Now even those lowly publications not initially selected by Apple will be able to showcase panoramas, videos and animations, et al, within their articles.

Previously they’d been limited to old school RSS links for publishing their content to Apple News.

As a bonus for those publishers who now have access to Apple News Format, they’ll also be able to access all of the associated analytics.

So, they can view unique users, shares on Facebook and Twitter, as well as the average time readers spend on the article.

Apple describes the changes (via 9to5Mac) as such: “Apple News Format is the custom JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) document format for News content. With Apple News Format, you can create signature content for News. Beautiful typography, rich photo galleries, videos, and fun animations bring your articles to life. You can author once and News will optimize your content for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, so your readers will have a great experience no matter which device they’re using.”

Related: iOS 9 tips & tricks

The announcement is a boon for Apple News adopters who discovered yesterday that advertisements will soon appear as if they’re regular articles.

Back in January it emerged Apple News had more users than Cupertino had previously thought. A bug had under-reported iOS users actually logging into the service, leading to “lower than reality” numbers.

Recent reports have also suggested Apple may be preparing to cater to paid subscribers. Perhaps we’ll here more at Apple’s event on March 21?