Sydney company Tapview has developed new micropayment technology that gives people the freedom to pay a few cents for each online news story they want to read rather than pay a full subscription for news they may not use.
Tapview CEO James Jansson said he came up with the idea, which is now being trialled at two of Fairfax’s rural and regional titles, when he saw his friends in the media struggling to find work because of the lack of people paying for news.
“Converting casual free readers to paying customers is the holy grail of digital content publishing,” he said. “Instead of signing up to a full subscription you can click a button embedded on your article and pay 10c to read it,” he said.
“The ultimate goal is to create a content access system that’s available everywhere where people say ‘I’ll just Tapview it’. It’s something that’s not impossible to achieve.”
Why Tapview has attracted government funding
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW, Small Business and Skills John Barilaro said Tapview, which received a Jobs for NSW Minimum Viable Product grant of $14,685 to develop its analytics technology, was a great example of a small company with a big idea that could provide a boost for job growth in NSW.
“Tapview is a fantastic idea which allows people to pay for only what they want to read on whatever site or publication they want to read it on with a tap of a button.
“Minimum Viable Product (MVP) grants are designed to support promising tech startups with the funds needed to gather customer feedback and test their underlying business model. The NSW Government funding for Tapview has also led to a further $100,000 in seed funding from fintech accelerator H2 Ventures as well as an additional $60,000 from private investors.
James Jansson said the MVP grant was vital in the development of the company. Tapview is now looking to expand its client base in Australia and internationally.
“The Jobs for NSW grant helped us give our business customers the analytics functionality they wanted. The grant helped keep our doors open.”
“We have significant development and sales requirements over the next six months. If we can implement Tapview on a paper that satisfies a particular region then other papers in that region will jump on. It’s not easy to say no to thousands of registered credit card users who are ready to pay.
“Users have seen the model and like it. Having a model where people can register for free and make micropayments works for the audience. We also definitely want to look overseas for customers and we are eyeing the UK as a good first step.”