With a restructure currently taking place, assets being sold and general tough times in the newspaper industry being faced up to, APN certainly has a lot on its plate at the moment. But the local and international awards its digital team have won—from best website for the fourth time in five years at the Canon Media Awards to a few mentions at The Webbys—show it’s creating international quality solutions and doing its best to keep pace with rapidly changing media consumption habits. And APN Digital New Zealand was recognised again last week at the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers 2012 Digital Media Awards for the Asia Pacific region, with the recently redesigned nzherald.co.nz winning silver in the best in online media – newspaper website category, following up another silver in 2010.
The submission highlighted the homepage redesign, the extensive interactive coverage of the 2012 Olympics and 2011 Elections, and its adoption of the Windows 8 platform. There were more than 50 media companies from 16 countries across Asia and the Middle East participating and APN was the only publisher in New Zealand to receive an award. Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post took gold for best newspaper website.
“These awards are fast becoming the most prestigious in the digital arena in the Asia Pacific region and we’re proud to be recognised again on the international stage,” says Spencer Bailey, general manager of APN Digital New Zealand. “We’re constantly improving our offerings to meet the needs of our readers and to drive innovation in digital media. This award demonstrates our ongoing commitment.”
Judges’ noted the website as outstanding and their comments reflected the pro-active approach to meeting user expectations and innovative adoption of the Windows 8 platform, which allows users to immerse themselves in the latest news in a highly visual and engaging way and operates seamlessly across a range of tablets and devices.
The app, which recently featured on The Next Web’s list of 25 “inspiring” Windows 8 app designs and was designed by Marker Metro (an agency that launched earlier this year and is dedicated to building Windows apps) aims to bring the best of the Herald into an environment that enables readers to easily share with social networks, filter to see only the news they want and customise screen settings, allowing a side ‘snack view’ so they can keep up-to-date while they go about their day.