The Financial Times iPad app has been downloaded 480,000 times, according to FT's CEO John Ridding.

Ridding was talking at an industry event in New York this week where he credited the iPad and other mobile devices with driving 20 percent of the newspaper's new online subscriptions.

Reuters reports that Ridding claimed there had been 50,000 downloads of the FT app since the end of November, pushing the total up from 430,000 to 480,000.

"The rapid emergence of tablet devices is a potentially profound development for publishers," Ridding said.

News Corp, which released The Daily, an iPad-only digital newspaper, will certainly be hoping that Ridding is correct.

The Financial Times app, which is free to download, was updated last week to include fixes for bugs that caused stories not to appear on the secondary World, Companies and UK pages, and a "couple of small design issues".