Feb 22, 2011

Apple Upsets App Developers And Do What They Always Do

I'm not often linking to a Techcrunch post, but when even MG Siegler rants against Apple, it's remarkable. Meanwhile, Apple seems to do what they always do in my opinion. Make something up, then give in a little, everyone is satisfied and another chapter of digital slavery is opened.

Apple Store glass cube at the base of the buildingImage via Wikipedia
Let's be honest, there is no way Apple can keep this 30% cut under that TOS for apps in their app-store. The publishers goes crazy, app developers get either thrown out by Apple or terminate their app themselves, and the FTC are starting investigations on their TOS according to the Wall Street Journal. Even the Apple-evangelists like MG Siegler is not okay with this behavior. There is no way, that Apple can keep on going like this.

But we saw it before, they lower the restriction or fees a little, everyone think they've won. They are happy and another chapter of binding has been written. I hope not. Everyone talks about content. Authors have all the right. After that, the publisher has the rights. Now you have a platform. It's totally okay to get money from offering such a service. Both can benefit. But the problem is, that you can't sell it like you want. I don't need to tell you once again what that means for ebook-apps like Kindle or content like articles, but I just want to bring up an example. You have a book for $10 on your store. That's $10 for you. You want to sell it via your app, that's 30% for Apple. That means you will get $7 instead of 10. Well, you could think you can sell it then fo let's say $12.99 in-app. Wrong, Apple doesn't allow this. And so on. Read some good articles about that on the internet. And it's worse if you by yourself spreading content for others. Readability is upset about their rejection from Apple, and posted an open letter.

Now even if Apple wouldn't charge a cent, you're still bound to the in-app selling. I think that it's not okay. As the holder of the rights, you may sell your content the way you want, even within the app. Google plays the joker and offers to distribute your content in-app for only 10% cut via One Pass. But much more, they have less restriction. You have your control over your content. But even with that, it remains unclear, why the heck people want to go into slavery? The web is there. It's free, it's open, just use it. And you can use the web from any major platform. No matter if you're an iPhone fan or and Android lover. There are ways even to use the web within the app. At least on Android. But the browser is on the iPhone, too. Don't let other get control over your content. In the end, it's all you got.