Apple's new subscription service has not gone down well with app maker Readability, which has said in an open letter to Apple that its new policy “smacks of greed”.
The company has introduced a new iTunes App Store policy that requires apps which 'offer content, functionality, or services' to use Apple's In App Purchase API. The API policy allows Apple to draw 30 per cent from the revenue generated by the apps.
“We’re obviously disappointed by this decision, and surprised by the broad language. By including 'functionality, or services,' it’s clear that you intend to pursue any subscription-based app, not merely those of services serving up content,” Readability founder Richard Ziade wrote in the open letter.
Readability offers web and mobile apps that allow users to view web content in a pared-down text based version that is easier to read. The company's iOS app, which was rejected by Apple, operates on a 30/70 per cent revenue sharing basis, with 70 going to the writers and publlishers. The new Apple policy would make Readability's business model very hard to sustain.
The open letter ended with an offer of compromise, "we’d be glad to deliver Readability for iOS – with in-app purchasing – if you’d carve out 70% from your 30% fee and share it with writers and publishers, just as we do."