What you need to know
- The New York Times has announced that it will no longer be making its crosswords available in downloadable .puz format.
- People will have to use the New York Times' own crossword app to solve puzzles from August 10.
The New York Times has announced that it will stop making its crosswords available as .puz files from August 10, forcing everyone to use its own app if they want to continue solving the puzzles.
Currently, the NYT makes its files available so that people can use them with any third-party app that supports the .puz format. When that changes, the official NYT crossword app will be the only option. The move was announced out of the blue yesterday. The reason? It'll make it easier for crossword editors, apparently.
Starting Aug. 10, we will no longer support crossword play on Across Lite. This means we won't provide downloadable .puz files for use on that platform. You can play the NYT crossword on our Crossword App and on desktop and mobile web.
As Six Colors' Jason Snell points out, this is more than an irritation for people. For some, it could be a huge accessibility problem, too. Third-party apps have more robust accessibility features than the NYT app, something that will impact people directly from August 10.
While there are Mac accessibility features to help out where possible — and the same goes for iPhones and iPads — the options made available by apps can be vital.
We can only hope that the NYT reconsiders the move before August 10 rolls around.