MEDIA: Reuters ventures into audio news

Information provider Reuters is to offer hourly audio news updates to mobile phones and websites, which can be accessed on demand.

Information provider Reuters is to offer hourly audio news updates to mobile phones and websites, which can be accessed on demand.

The package is part of a deal with independent radio production company Somethin' Else. Presenters will adapt Reuters' online bulletins to create broadcast quality voice reports across six subject areas: world news, UK top news, sport, business, entertainment and 'funnily enough' - a quirky news round-up.

The move is part of Reuters' continuing attempts to position itself as a player in the consumer market, adding to existing mobile and broadband products.

It already supplies content to around 900 websites but said that audio is a vital growth area given the continuing proliferation of mobile phones.

An editorial team of eight journalists will be led by Simon Cornes and James Hirst. There is also a pool of freelances.

Somethin' Else commercial director Sonita Alleyne said: 'Any kind of news service must have its own voice. This will have a youth feeling with gravitas.'

A recent media customer survey by Reuters found that audio was seen as the most important medium for access across multiple platforms.

The new service will be accessed by consumers via an options menu at their preferred online or mobile portal.

Reuters said it would be available to online customers before the end of March.



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