USA Today app has nearly twice as many downloads on TouchPad than all Android tablets combined | webOS Nation

USA Today app has nearly twice as many downloads on TouchPad than all Android tablets combined 45

by Derek Kessler Fri, 10 Feb 2012 8:40 pm EST

USA Today

The App Catalog on the HP TouchPad might not have the most expansive selection in the tablet space, but it's got some pretty decent apps in it. One of those is the free USA Today app, which provides a slick interface for accessing the news site's stories. And as it would turn out, it's a relatively popular app. From a leaked slide from an internal USA Today presentation, we've learned that the USA Today app for TouchPad has been downloaded 250,000 times, which isn't bad for a platform that might have over a million devices on market.

While that pales in comparison to the 2.9 million downloads for the iPad, the webOS tablet app handily trounces its Android tablet competition. All standard Android tablets (excluding the Amazon Kindle Fire, because while it's based on Android, it's not a "true" Android tablet) combined have netted a total of 130,000 downloads. That's on tablets from multiple manufacturers who are still standing behind the product. Heck, HP's defunct tablet has managed to clock more app downloads than Windows Phone as a platform.

Is this a sign of the success of webOS? Not really, since a good number of those downloads likely came from users that had purchased their TouchPad at fire sale prices. This is more an indictment of the state of Android tablets, that despite the forces pushing them they have yet to see notable success. Meanwhile, the $200 Kindle Fire has snagged 260,000 downloads of its own custom USA Today app, just barely more than the TouchPad's quarter-million. Not bad for a dead platform, eh?

Source: GeekWire; Via: Daring Fireball



so what. the touchpad line is dead. 1 and done, while Android tablets are here to stay.

According to HP the TouchPad line is not dead ... it just takes "a break" ... :)

The TP might be dead, but webOS is not.

Prognosticate much?

Is there anything that can please jaded webOS fans anymore?

Well, Derek wishlist posts have replaced the semi-weekly "Did Sprint dump Palm or did Palm dump Sprint" posts. Android has 16K newspaper apps to choose from, WebOS offer is minimal and stagnated. HP cant even be bothered to publish quarterly editions of their monthly Pivot magazine. It's 10:04 on February 11th, I pronounce the abandoned victim dead on scene. Sorry.

I love USAToday, find it quick, and use it every once and a while. Their interface is different and still useful. Not everything appeals to me news wise on USAToday, but then I don't really like much of what most rags have to say. Either way, thanks for the insight and good to hear webOS rocking! Sorli...

Honestly USTODAY has some of the best app on all platforms. Im a WP user and the app on it is the among the best apps. IMO.
The one on W8 looks just as appealing aslo as it was previwed..

The Android app is not that bad.

Look forward to downloading this on my TP as I will be receiving it next week.

I dont think TP is dead. They just on some sort of timeout to come back strong. I think HP learned from its mistakes and know what to do right this time around.

" I think HP learned from its mistakes and know what to do right this time around."

HP will not risk another dime on Touchpad after a 3.5 billion dollar write down. The market is moving forward on updated hardware, software and app ecosystems. NOTHING HAS CHANGED. There is no do-over when you stung your retailers, customers, developers, employees and stockholders to the tune of 3.5B. HP didn't know how to market a superior product, they dont know how to innovate, they dont know how to collaborate. HP helped make Apple the largest company in the world, they've already been "all in on with WebOS" and busted. How many more billion does HP have to loose before people realize Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny are more likely to release Touchpad 2.0 than HP?

"HP will not risk another dime on Touchpad after a 3.5 billion dollar write down."

Besides the money that they've invested in open webOS, and also not including the time Meg Whitman stated there will be future webOS tablets..... you're right. Besides those two things, they will not be spending another dime on the TouchPad. Oh, and that's also not including the current customer support, and the current app catalog support and system....... but I'm positive you weren't thinking about any of those things when you said that.

" Meg Whitman stated there will be future webOS tablets...."

I know this hasn't been stated publicly.

And let me clarify (thanks for pointing it out), they will not risk another dime on new Touchpad or phone products. They do have a legal obligation to provide marginal token support for a year or two from their last product release for existing hardware.


I love this new hiccup in WebOS Nation 2.0, makes the chat area look a lot busier than it really is.

Open other end.

Don't drink and drive.

Tired of hearing that false crap about Apple being the largest company in the world. In fact, it ranks #35 in the USA, according to Fortune 500. It is what it is, #35, and starting to fade, except for its reputation for labor abuses and other manifestations of greed.
HP has a lot of respect and future...

i think the line that this is more of an indictment of android tablets is most on point. Is USA Today really that popular? Outside of airports i rarely see people just buying a USA today. I mean i've only lived in Big Cities with rather established papers like the Chicago Trib, NY Times, LA Times, Washington Post so maybe that is part of it too.

But yeah i've seen a few people in best buy actually buy a nonipad tablet. But honestly the place i tend to see tablets mostly are starbucks and when i was traveling during xmas and i didn't recognize one tablet that wasn't an ipad or kindle. I thought i saw a touchpad but i was just a darn ipad 1 in a black plastic case. So pretty much nothing is selling that well.

@SnotBoogie your comment is factually inaccurate. USATODAY is second in circulation only to the Wall street Journal in the US. It is the first widely circulated american newspaper in the world. Do people read it. Hell yea ! With close to 3 million downloads on the ipad come on !

A non-Ipad market does exist. Consumer are looking for different usage of a tablet. W8, will do it for some. Ipad 3 (maybe). Android is still trying ! And dont forget that OPEN SOURCE opens a lot of doors for webOS. Its not fully dead just on hiatus.

The iPad remains king but quality choice for consumer is always good for us. The quality is on the way in 2012.

I am not a webOS fanboy. If i am fanboy it would be for WP7 but honestly webOS is a pretty awesome OS. Dont forget that it was the second most sold tablet in 2011 even if it was heavily discounted.

What doors does open source "open" for webOS?

Any manufacturer that would use it for open source could have gotten in the webOS business since last year by licensing it or buying it from HP and enjoyed the whole enchilada. Now, they not only get no app revenue, but now they have to somehow make a profitable tablet that is price undercut by the Kindle Fire, overmatched in apps, ecosystem and popularity by iPad, and outpowered in ubiquity by Windows 8 tablets.

Even HP is making W8 their primary tablet platform. People keep talking about possibilities, but every company that gets a chance to put their money behind it....declines.

Completely meaningless snotboogie, more than 50% of the circulation of USA Today is at hotels where you have no choice in what paper gets delivered to your door in the morning.

Do you know even 1 person who actually subscribes to USA Today? I doubt it...

until they port over the WebOS version to android :-(

Along the same lines of dead, not dead, screwed everything up, got it right......... here is an article on ZDnet about things they wish the iPad had. Some of them are in WebOS devices and OS. The first picture is of a Touchstone.

This is more an indictment of the state of Android tablets, that despite the forces pushing them they have yet to see notable success.

Yep. Android tablets in general have been a disappointment. The Nook and the Kindle Fire are doing great however (relatively speaking).

Meanwhile, the $200 Kindle Fire has snagged 260,000 downloads of its own custom USA Today app, just barely more than the TouchPad's quarter-million.

Sure, but didn't the Kindle Fire just come out? I wouldn't call that just barely considering the Kindle Fire achieved that download count in under 2 months compared to ~6 months for the TouchPad.

Android tablets have a market cannibalism concern. The phones are such capable hardware, they diminish the value of lugging a wifi capable full sized tablet around. Damn, if had not jumped on the Touchpad story, how much further would discounting have gone to get that stuff off the shelf?

Eat at Joe's.

So, you pick one application, and because android tablets haven't downloaded it much you twist that jnto an indictment of the entire platform?

Perhaps their application just stinks on that platform, it is only rated 3.4 out of 5 stars. That's a D+ in most people's gradebook.

Yep. How many Android tablets have you seen in the wild? How about TouchPads?

None? Okay then - what about iPads and Kindle Fires?


In the past 6 months I've seen one Android tablet in the wild, one TouchPad, and four iPads. With all of the available Android tablets on the market you would think that you would see more. I wouldn't argue with the Android guys too much. I don't believe it is worth you time. It seems they have nothing better to do than latch on to any feel good story about webOS on webOSNation or in the forums, even the ones that don't have anything to do with Android, and try to bring the OS down to their level. So sad. I don't see webOS users going after every feel good story on the numerous Android blogs. Just saying....

Actually I've seen several dozen android tablets, 2 touchpads, and tons of ipads. Granted I work in IT, so I probably see more than your average bear.

But like the poster above said, their are a plethora of news apps for android, so pulling one that has a lower number of downloads than touchpads doesn't really say anything. Personally I don't like news apps, i just use the web versions, primarily Google news and cnn (along with several local news sites.

In the wild, NYC commuter trains, I can say about 40% of the non-reader tablets I see are Android. Commuters are early adopters and have a lot of savvy. 60-90 minutes of free time each way will do that. I would imagine that the pirate friendly nature of Android for digital content helps put a dent in the usual Ipad monopoly, and these commuters are more a small niche, than representative of the tablet market.

And in this group, Kindle/Nook/Other easily trump Ipads. But that's more a statement of people looking the simplicity of ereading, over the cost and restrictions of living out of the Itunes store.

Derek does want logic and reason, he just wants attention.

It is interesting - and sad - that you call free choice "the pirate friendly nature of Android for digital content".

Considering I roll with a tech-heavy crowd (I'm a technical development architect by trade), I see dozens of most current stripes on a fairly regular basis. Outside of that group, mostly iPads, Galaxy Tab 10s, and Kindle Fires. The only guy I know that owned a Xoom (or any Motorola Android tablet, for that matter) returned it, but around here the Galaxy is the anti-iOS tablet of choice, with Fires being the choice of those who don't want a full-fledged tablet and/or are looking to step up from e-ink to something more capable.
I have yet to see someone else with a Touchpad in the wild, however. The occasional banged-up Sprint Pre, sure, but nary a Touchpad.

looks like a cool app... If only HP had pushed webOS 2.0 update to Pre, Pixi, & the "Plus" versions :'( ... (I currently own a Pixi Plus)

Maybe because its the only decent news app for the touchpad. Unfortunatley the only way to read it offline is to keep the card open. That being said the USAToday app on Android sucks in comparison. However, Pulse and Currents blow away any touchpad news apps and are available of offline reading. Why is it you can read the IPAD USA today app offline but not the other platform apps.

Very meaningless spin article simply because on platforms with lots of news app choices, USAToday accounts for a much smaller share of the news app pie.

For example, iPad has over ten times the downloads of the USAToday app that the Touchpad does, but it has over SIXTY times the units sold that Touchpad sold. But the Kindle Fire downloads/unit sales ratio is much closer because it's a nascent platform like webOS without the same vast number of news choices.

And keep in mind that Android and iPad tablets sell for 2-4x the price that almost all Touchpads sold for.

The fact that this is the sort of thing trumpeted on the main page says a lot more about the health and lack of viability of webOS than any slanted download comparison. Pathetic...

C'mon, let's not do the self euphoria here. Touchpad/webOS is starving for apps so badly that USA Today was one of the first things new Touchpad owners installed b/c it was free and readily available in the app store and it was what others were doing, not b/c people really use it. Seriously, how many use this app? I must've of used it like twice since I installed it back in September.

This is funny...part of what makes me keep coming to this site despite moving on to Android...

Ha ha ha!! I really like my Touchpad - now that it's running Android 4.0...

Touchpad/webOS has one decent app, so everybody downloads it.

Android has eleventy thousand news apps, so the USAToday app for Android doesn't get downloaded much.

And that one app's download numbers are an "indictment" of the Android platform and an endorsement of webOS?? Haha hahahahaaaa!!!!

Totally agree...The USA Today app on ALL the platforms is a piece of crap. I had it on both my Xoom and iPad2 and deleted it from both of them because it was worthless. The only reason it remains on the Touchpad I have is it's the ONLY news app on the WebOS platform.

Here's what I would like to see, WebOS sold to Google so they can gut the crap out of it and put all it's useful properties into Android 5. WebOS is DEAD and it's never coming back, face it. It's only chance is a "parts car" in the race to the finish.

*Unrelated question cause I'm just curious* Does anyone know why HP didn't push the webOS 2.0 update to the Pre,Pixi,& the "plus" variants? I'm 13 so I don't know alot about it :)
Typed on my Palm Pixi Plus

Why do people want "apps" that only act as a website frontend, when you could have the true thing, at least with a (way) better browser? That's just... regress. Going backwards and forgetting years of development. It did make sense in 2004 with WAP / mobile sites. We have 2012.

I'd say the whole line about "fire sale prices" doesn't matter as much as Derek believes. If people are downloading "USA Today", then it probably means they're actually USING their Touchpads for something other than, say, a toy for their kids, an electronic photobook, or any of the other things that people said they were buying them for. If I'm reading the news on a device, I'm using it for a whole lot more than just one thing (any device that I set up to read news on is going to come with me to work and on trips a whole lot more often than one I just use as a photo album).

Download counts simply count "downloads". Any determination of "device usage" based on the download count of a single app is pure conjecture.

That's a good question, would love to see when all those downloads occurred. If the downloads continue today I would agree with your assertion. If however the majority were done immediately after the fire sale, i think we would have a completely different determination.

What a misleading article without looking at the larger picture.
Simply put, USA Today and the Guardian were all the Touchpad had for real news applications while on other platforms people tended to go for aggregators like the market-leading Pulse and Flipboard, among dozens of others.
What did the Touchpad have that outside of USA Today and Guardian? Chintzy newsreaders that only half-worked, and none nearly as well as the leaders on other platforms. So what did webOS users go to? The well-designed Guardian and USA Today apps that had professional teams behind them, of course. It's a no-brainer.
Mosaic for webOS really had promise to lead the pack until they packed up their ball and went home out of the blue because they failed miserably in properly anticipating the cost and traffic it'd require to run a proper application, and they left everyone that installed the app stranded. That was one of the lowest blows I'd seen in platform support yet--from a set of developers with strong involvement in webOS community no less.
So, tl;dr: This article is rubbish and based on wildly false comparisons. Touchpad users went for well-designed, professionally-developed apps (USA Today and Guardian) and other platforms have competent, sexy news aggregators that work better than either of those two apps and anything else currently on webOS.
It's not so hard to see when you actually look at the big picture, between titles and their download counts on their respective platforms, and this article would get laughed out of the room were it shown to and Android or iOS blog for that reason alone.