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Publishers Push for iPad Subscriptions

07 Feb 2011

Publishers are eyeing a deal that Rupert Murdoch and News Corp. have worked out with Apple Inc. to allow subscription sales of its upcoming iPad Daily.

A number of magazine publishers are unhappy that they have been restricted to single copy sales only of their magazines for the popular tablet computing device.

David Carey, president of Hearst Magazines, told the New York Times, "If you look at the Apple store, the most common reason that people give an app a low rating is that it lacks a subscription option. They want to subscribe, and they don't like the idea of paying $4.99 a month."

CNet reports that Apple is working on a subscription model in Europe that could be rolled out soon. But it says publishers there are unhappy that they are being required by Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) to charge for a separate subscription for the iPad even if readers are already subscribed to their print editions.

They are also unhappy that Apple isn't sharing personal information about people who buy their publications.

Publishers reportedly hope that the arrival of iPad rivals that use Google Inc.'s (Nasdaq: GOOG) Android operating system will give the enough leverage to make Apple change its policies.

"I think that the new devices and the new Android-based devices will be as good or better than Apple long term," said Bob Sauerberg, president of Conde Nast, told The Times. "We feel strongly that it's too early to pick a winner. The iPad is a great device with an early lead. We see a lot of other great devices."

Apple has an 1,800-employee campus in Elk Grove, and is one of the largest private-sector employers in the region.



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