April 5, 2016 Last Updated 9:10 am

Postmedia Network debuts ‘reimagined’ Vancouver Sun

Effort, though, leaves out a major piece of the prior strategy: a new tablet edition such as those launched for the Montreal Gazette and Calgary Herald, but later abandoned as newspaper company experienced growing losses

In 2014, the Canadian newspaper chain Postmedia Network, began to unveil reimagined versions of their daily newspapers. At the time, the chain said it was part of a strategy to reach readers at any time of the day, using the platform preferred by the reader.

Part of the strategy, therefore, was to launch tablet editions for those readers who might want to experience the paper in that way, so the Montreal Gazette, and later the Calgary Herald, launched tablet editions.

Vancouver Sun newspaper“The Montreal Gazette for iPad takes an interactive approach to exploring your city, your country and your world. Each weekday evening you’ll find fresh creative approaches to news, entertainment and analysis that illustrate and illuminate the top stories of the day in a touch and explore format only the iPad can deliver,” the company said at the time.

The experiment, dubbed the four-platform strategy, could not make it a full year. By October of 2015 Postmedia announced it would shutter its tablet editions after reporting a $54.1 million loss in the previous quarter. The first thing to go, for the company said to be committed to digital media, was one of its digital media projects. In the end, the priority was cost cutting, not growing digital.

“They’re beautiful products and we’re incredibly proud of how they look, but they didn’t reach a critical mass of audience or advertisers,” Phyllise Gelfand told The Canadian Press last fall.

But one can imagine that while all this was going on, work continued at other papers with the “reimagined” versions of the newspapers. And so today Postmedia announced that its new “reimagined Vancouver Sun” was to be unveiled.

The redesigned Sun comes with a new look in print, and newly redesigned mobile apps. But no new tablet edition, of course.

“The evolution of the Vancouver Sun takes a significant leap forward today as we introduce the sleek redesign for our print edition and website, as well as the new mobile app,” said editor-in-chief Harold Munro in the press release for the new designs. “The team and I are confident that readers will enjoy and appreciate the new look and content including the new print section, An Edition of NP in the Vancouver Sun.”

NP stands for the National Post, Postmedia’s national newspaper.

Munro also penned an explanation of the changes to the paper, and seemed to harken back to the original strategy announced two years ago concerning reaching readers on the device of their choice.

“These changes align with how research tells us readers consume news and information on different devices. Our goal is to build upon the deep connection we’ve had with a growing number of readers in Metro Vancouver and British Columbia for more than a century,” Munro wrote.

Vancouver Sun iPad app newspaper

“Our website, vancouversun.com, has also undergone a refit. It loads faster, the search function works better and you’ll be greeted by the same colour coding for content that we use in the print edition,” Munro waid.

“Our new smartphone app is free and will have a different tone than the newspaper and website. Watch for bite-sized local news and information designed for a Metro Vancouver audience on the go.”

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