The company declined to comment on why. But a person familiar with the matter, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to disclose details, said Friday that News Corp. and iPad maker Apple have decided to delay the launch while they work on the technology involved in providing subscriptions.
This person said the holdup will be weeks, not months.
A formal announcement about the publication, called The Daily, had been slated for Wednesday. News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch and Apple CEO Steve Jobs were scheduled to attend a launch event at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
The delay was reported earlier by The Wall Street Journal, which is owned by News Corp.
The company has staffed bureaus around the country and has been producing mockup editions. The Daily will cover general news, culture and entertainment and will include video.
Since going on sale last year, the iPad has kindled new hopes for professional journalism in the digital age. Traditional publishers are betting the iPad and its imitators can help provide new sources of advertising and subscription revenue.
And many of them need it. The economics of news on the broader Web have been brutal for print publishers. Space for Web advertising typically sells at a fraction of what it does in print, and few publications have been able to successfully charge readers for online access to stories.
News Corp. has revealed few details about The Daily. It has not said, for instance, what it will charge readers, if anything. But the company has been at the forefront of efforts to get subscription fees for digital content. The Wall Street Journal’s website has required a paid subscription for 14 years and the newspaper charges for its iPad app.