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What is Google News Showcase? How to get free access to paywalled news stories

Google has announced its News Showcase service is now available in the UK and has signed up some big name publishers. Here’s how the Apple News rival app shapes up.

What is Google News Showcase?

Google News Showcase is a new licensing initiative from Google that aims to provide a balance between freely available news on the web, while trying to ensure publishers aren’t giving up their content without due compensation.

As a result, Showcase will give Google News readers access to some paywalled content, as part of the licensing agreement. In turn, Google asserts, this may encourage users to sign-up for a subscription. News publishers will get a monthly fee from Google, which should cover the cost of that paywalled content somewhat.

How to access Google News Showcase?

Google News Showcase content is available within the Google News app on both iOS and Android apps and via the mobile web. It appears alongside your personalised news in the For You tab, that’s surfaced by signing into your Google account.¬†Showcase stories will be marked as such within the app, alongside the rest of the For You content from suggested news sources.

“Users get a richer news experience from trusted news organisations and can discover publications covering their interests and the places they care about,” Google says in a blog post. “News Showcase panels allow people to dive deeper into a story and see a list of important articles updated multiple times per day by their favourite publishers.”

Which UK publishers are on board with Google News Showcase?

Google says 120 publications have signed up thus far, with plenty more to follow. Some of the UK’s biggest names are on board, including the Financial Times, Evening Standard, The Independent, the Telegraph, Reuters and the New Statesman. Iliffe Media, Midland News Association, Newsquest, JPI Media and Reach are among the others publishers involved.

Globally, Google says there are now 450 publications available within the Google News Showcase platform.