US, 17 February 2011 – Let the games begin. Just one day after Apple announced its new in-app recurring subscription services, Google announced the launch of a similar system called One-Pass that’s significantly cheaper for the content publisher. While Apple takes a 30% cut on the deal from publishers, Google only takes 10%. But, is that all that matters?
Publishers have openly voiced their outrage with Apple’s new subscriptions system policies and 30% cut. The issue is that publishers can no longer have links directing clients to buy content outside the app environment. Also, should publishers offer the same content outside Apple’s subscription system, the price must be the same or cheaper.
Google took this opportunity to offer a similar subscription service for the Android and only command a 10% cut with looser policies for publishers. This will certainly win publishers but what about consumers?
iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users are usually fanatics who love everything about it. Apple makes it extremely easy for their millions of users to do anything they want, including payment. Apple provides privacy and security with stringent control over publishers. Apple is its own ecosystem and publishers have direct access to a sure market. Do users care about disgruntled publishers?
No. Users don’t buy an iPad so it can access a specific publisher’s content. They buy an iPad, iPhone or iPod because they love these practical gadgets. And, they will access the content of interest that is available. Publishers can leverage this built-in market if they wish… at a 30% cut. Not a bad deal really.
As for Google subscription system, their strategy is geared towards pleasing the publishers. And, it makes total business sense. Publishers will flock to Google and build their One-Pass platform for smartphones. Apple and Google have very different strategic reasons for their subscription system policies.
It makes no difference to users in the end. Users will take what they can get, what’s available. Business bickering is of no concern to them. If publishers don’t like Apple’s new subscription policies, don’t provide the content and don’t take advantage of the built-in market of millions of Apple fanatics.