iPad to rescue media from penny-pinching Web surfers?


"If you are a small business, can you still be a competitor in this environment? You'll have to be developing for all these different platforms, whereas a couple of years ago you were developing for the Web," said Eric Hippeau, CEO of online news provider The Huffington Post.

Another issue that needs to be worked out is the relationship between the device makers, such as Apple, and the media companies.

Carr noted that for media companies, the relationships they build with customers are the core of their businesses. That they have an understanding of customer preferences, not to mention their credit card numbers, allows them to sell additional products to these constituencies.

As things are currently set up, Apple stands between the media company and the customer. With iPad purchases, Apple does provide some customer information, "but not as much as I have on the Web," Hippeau said, speaking about Huffington Post's own iPad app.

"If Apple wants to be a big partner to media organizations, [it] will have to learn that media organizations live off this data, and will have to open up a lot more," Hippeau said.