Newspaper Publishers Rebel Against Its Best Enemy

Newspaper publishers in France are threatening to take their case against Apple to the competition authority. The California-based firm is seeking to impose its iTunes payment solution as the sole means of purchasing iPad newspaper subscriptions. The publishers are right to oppose the move, but not solely on the grounds that Apple charges a 30% commission on all sales. If forced to accept Apple’s proprietary, and totally opaque, payment solution, publishers would lose control of much of their customer relationship data. They would also miss out on learning key lessons about the switch from free access to paywall. Both are crucial factors for publishers desperate to reinvent their business model. They need to stand up to Apple, and to do that they need transparent payment means that remain under their control.

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