Apple’s Expensive Walled Garden: Apple Offers Subscriptions for Apps

Apple on Tuesday cleared the way for media companies to begin selling subscriptions to their magazine, newspaper, music and video content on the iPad and its other devices.But Apple is exacting a steep toll: 30 percent of the cost of the subscription and ownership of subscriber data like names and e-mail addresses if the purchase is made through its App Store. The arrangement left many in the media business cool, and few ran to embrace it.To read this New York Times report in full, see: see:Apple Opens a Door, Keeps Keys
Apple Inc. laid out a new subscription service and broad rules cementing its power as gatekeeper for most of the digital content sold through the iPhone and iPad, setting up a battle with media companies that may be thrown off the devices if they won’t share revenue or cede control of customer data.Some media companies criticized the plan, saying that the restrictions stack the cards too much in Apple’s favor.For instance, companies that sell digital content for Apple devices now will be compelled to make that content available for sale through apps at the iTunes App Store. Apple would take a 30% cut on any sale. Companies can continue to sell content through their own websites — in which case Apple wouldn’t share revenues — but they cannot link to their site from within the app and the content at iTunes would have to be the same price or lower.

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