BBC iPhone Apps canned

The BBC has suspended its plans to launch free iPhone Apps for news and sports after complaints from paid-for providers.

The Newspaper Publishers Association has asked the broadcaster's governing body, the BBC Trust, to stop the launch of the free Apps because it wants License fee payers to cough up twice for news and sports on their iDevices, saying that giving stuff away for 'free' would "damage the nascent market".

The argument seems to revolve around whether the BBC is offering a new service or an extension to an existing one. The sports App was due to launch before this year's World Cup and would allow Apple owners to watch some of the footie action on their iPhone, iPod Touch or the forthcoming iPad.

Newspaper publishers are facing a kicking as more people get their news fix elsewhere, and more often than not for free. Which is good news for everyone apart from billionaire publishing magnates and their nepotistic and anachronistic dynasties.

Blackberry and Android users would have eventually been given access to the service but it looks like pressure from Big Media has forced the Beeb's hand, and consumers will lose out yet again.