Reports of the Kindle app’s demise have been somewhat exaggerated

The hills are alive with the sound of tech writers going “OMG! Apple will kill the Kindle app!” I’m not convinced.

The bit about Apple refusing to “let customers to have access to purchases they have made outside the App Store” isn’t a quote from Sony. It isn’t included in the Sony Reader blog’s explanation either.

Since such a policy would make Apple look quite exceptionally evil, you’d think Sony might have mentioned it.

I think the NYT is right and wrong at the same time. When it says Sony users can’t access content they’ve already bought, it’s perfectly correct: if you can’t have the app, you can’t have any content that’s delivered via that app.

Apple hasn’t banned the content. It’s rejected the app.

Of course, the fact that so many people think it will kill the Kindle app doesn’t say much for Apple’s public image…

2 thoughts on “Reports of the Kindle app’s demise have been somewhat exaggerated

  1. G24 says:

    According to a clarification from Apple, they’re just enforcing an existing rule stating that apps offering purchases elsewhere must also support in-app purchasing.

    It’s not entirely unreasonable of Apple to encourage a consistent and unified in-app purchasing experience. People will have a choice but no doubt many will choose the convenient ecosystem route over external content purchasing.

    The question is, will publishers kick up a fuss over the App store commission even if they can still make direct sales? The Apple service does have a value, but is the 30% cut too much for publishers who already have legacy marketing and distribution costs to cover? Will they adjust pricing to encourage external purchases?

  2. Gary says:

    You beat me to it – I was just going to post an update about it. I’m a bit baffled though, because the guidelines I’ve seen say that non-Apple in-app purchasing isn’t acceptable, but don’t mention anything about “if you offer purchasing outside the App Store, then…”

    Personally I think 30% is crazy for what’s essentially credit card processing. I suspect that figure will go down.

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