AFP considers streaming news directly to web users

The French news agency wants to focus on the expanding market for news on hand-held devices.

The French news agency, Agence France-Presse (AFP), is planning to stream its news directly to web users via hand-held devices and direct-access internet content, Le Monde reported on Thursday.

Speaking to the French evening daily, AFP chief executive Emmanuel Hoog said it would be absurd for the "third-biggest world news agency" not to have an application on the iPad, on smartphones and on the internet.

He spoke about "getting out of the strict system" where agencies sell their content to the newspapers who then sell it to the wider public. The news agency was considering ways of earning money from online news, Hoog said. He hinted at charging for some of the content and giving the rest for free.

"I am against the option of offering all content for free, because I think that information has a value," he added.