Editor Tina Brown and Chief Executive Officer of Newsweek and The Daily Beast Baba Shetty said in a statement Thursday the digital edition would be named Newsweek Global and that the plan was to expand its "growing tablet and online presence."
"We've taken the big digital step," Brown said.
"We really feel that we must embrace the future. You know Newsweek is approaching its 80th anniversary next year and we want it to have the next 80 years start in the way that the future is there."
"It's really only a question of when at this point in the print industry," she said, referring to the switch from hard copy printed on paper to an all-digital production.
To generations, Newsweek has been a news stand stalwart with front covers that set the tone for the week's top stories.
In financial trouble, the magazine was sold by The Washington Post to elderly philanthropist Sidney Harman, who bought Newsweek for $1 in August 2010 and took over its debts and pledged to keep it going.
But Harman died in April 2011 at age 92. His family then unloaded Newsweek, which was picked up by the digital news company, The Daily Beast, which was two years old at the time.
The company said Thursday that Newsweek and The Daily Beast "continued to post and publish distinctive journalism and have demonstrated explosive online growth in the process."
The Daily Beast now boasts an audience of 15 million unique visitors each month.
The plan for Newsweek is to have it available by paid subscription on the Internet in a format that is tablet-friendly, the company said.