Newspaper Pulls App Off iTunes In Dispute With Apple

Originally published on September 1, 2011 8:48 am
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STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

A major newspaper publisher is refusing demands from Apple and it's pulled its App off of iTunes. Apple demands that companies pay 30 percent of download revenues and the Financial Times doesn't want to do that. It also doesn't want to give up control of its customer data, as Apple requires.

MURAD AHMED: It is definitely very brave of them to do this. It's publicly criticizing Apple for its policies, which a lot of publishers who want to stay in with Apple don't want to do.

INSKEEP: Technology reporter Murad Ahmed has been following the negotiations between the Financial Times and Apple for his newspaper The Times of London, and says the customer data aspect was especially key here.

AHMED: That's a really big deal for newspaper publishers. They need to develop a relationship with their subscribers, to be able to make an FT which is personalized to the individual user to do that. They have to get this customer information, otherwise they've got no benefit from being in the App Store at all.

INSKEEP: Now not many companies have challenged Apple the way the FT is doing, although not many really have the resources to do it either. FT.com is one of the few profitable newspaper websites and it's now launched its own application on the Web - going around Apple. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.