The latest innovations from 8 top online publishers

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NPR and Reuters

Baseball season is winding down, but NPR has bases loaded in the mobile space. As the world's largest podcaster and an innovator on the iPhone, NPR says its new iPad app has the network poised for a grand slam this year.

The strength of the app is in its simplicity -- an extension of NPR's uncompromising, uncluttered environment on-air and online. A magazine-centric approach is built for gesture navigation and generates significant user engagement in the app; user sessions last more than 10 minutes on average, with engagement spanning text, audio, and multimedia content.

The sponsorship treatment is both innovative and understated. Each sponsor receives a session roadblock, with its logo integrated into the app for the duration of a user session. With the launch of the media player, users also receive a short audio sponsorship credit tied to a full-page interstitial. This unit has seen click-through rates as high as 20 percent, helped by innovative creative developed in partnership with Medialets, a leading rich media ad solution provider for the app space.

The NPR iPad app has been downloaded onto nearly 10 percent of the iPads sold to date and is also used on demo units in Apple stores.

Financial news and information website prides itself on offering best-of-breed products, exciting early adopters, and creating customized solutions for marketers. With the launch of Apple's iPad, Reuters seized the opportunity to meet all three objectives by creating an application called News Pro that harnesses the IOS platform with video-rich stories, dramatic photography, and lively market data.

"We reach our customers no matter where they are," says Reuters general manager Riley McDonough. "And that means leveraging our strengths to the fullest by providing a rich, robust experience through multimedia storytelling."

More than 20 million page views are generated each month through Reuters' mobile touch points alone. These innovations, including Reuters News Pro app for the iPhone, which has been downloaded more than 500,000 times, caught the attention of FedEx. The company came to Reuters early on in the development of its News Pro iPad app to sign on as the inaugural sponsor and reach a targeted audience of business decision makers. "We have global scope and the targeted reach necessary for marketers to meet their campaign goals," McDonough said.

In addition, Reuters remains committed to bettering the customer experience and increasing advertiser demand with plans to revamp of all its mobile sites by end of the year.