The Wall Street Journal reported that Google has been discussing the issue with several publishers, talking about paying a license fee to use content in an upcoming project.
While not much information is readily available yet, the company could be working with publishers outside the U.S., reported CultOfMac.com. Google is speaking with officials in France and elsewhere in Europe about the beginnings of the project.
The company said it sees a news service as an important asset because of the potential to help inform people and lead to a more educated democracy. Richard Gingras, vice president of News at Google, said the goal is to help people find quality journalism, something he said was a cornerstone issue for a healthy democracy.
Gingras said Google would build on previous initiatives like the Google News Initiative, and said they “care deeply” about the issue.
Google hasn’t said yet whether the service will be free.
Apple launched Apple News+ last year, priced at $9.99 a month. The service offers subscribers access to over 300 papers and magazines, including Vogue, National Geographic Magazine, People, ELLE, The Wall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.
While Apple hasn’t released statistics on growth, it mentioned in a report last year that growth had been sluggish.
If Google launches its proposed service, it would become the third major tech platform to pay licensing fees to third-party organizations. Facebook also said it wants to pay publishers to show its content in its upcoming news aggregation service.
The tech giants’ moves toward aggregation comes to a world that is increasingly focused on efficiency and combining platforms, and many platforms are trying to make it simplify the sign-up process.