Google News would allow free access from news websites to paywalled articles

Google will begin paying for some paywall material for its News Spotlight service as part of its $1 billion investment in relationships with news publishers. News Spotlight, a recent extension to Google News that was introduced in October, reveals publishers’ selected story panels but is not yet available in the US.

In collaboration with select news publishers, News Showcase will “start offering people access to paywalled content,” says a blog post from Google. Google will pay for the exclusive availability to paywalled sites to partners. Users would also have to register with the individual publishers to access that content.

Users in the US shouldn’t get too enthusiastic about free articles. In some countries, Google lists publishers’ collaborations, but the US is not currently on the list. In Brazil and Germany, the News Showcase went live in October. Publications have also been signed on in other countries including Argentina, Canada, France, the UK and Australia. “In several other countries, conversations are underway,” Google says.

A new sort of story panel was also unveiled by Google, allowing individual publications to view curated lists of relevant stories of the day. These choices will feature in the For You feeds of consumers, as well as in a newly devoted area on Google News inside the Newsstand.

For the Google News app on Android, News Showcase was first introduced and is now available on iOS. Google says and Google Explore will be arriving shortly.

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