For some, this is not all that surprising. After all, we're talking about a company that has found a way to tap the under-age set for $150 of their allowance, and has TV producers freaking out about the iPhone being the new mode of gathering video news.
And then there's Rupert Murdoch's The Daily, launching this Wednesday, a completely digital news source that runs on only one platform: the iPad.
Now, according to The Wall Street Journal's Russell Adams, Apple's new take on the news appears to be that if a user is holding an iPhone to access media, we want a cut. And, they've set a deadline: "beginning on March 31, any [magazine or newspaper] app that does not take payments through its iTunes store will be rejected." The reason: if readers bypass iTunes, Apple loses its 30 percent fee.
Although this may sound like a strong-arm tactic to accelerate Apple's role in the PayPal world, The New York Times' Claire Cain Miller and Miguel Helft say the 30 percent take has always been part of the fine print agreement for Apps. What's new, they say, is that Apple is getting serious about enforcing it, and has gone so far as to reject a Sony e-reader app because it would let readers buy books outside of the app, meaning Apple would be left out of the transaction.
But is this about something bigger than the iWorld?
Forrester Researcher's James L. McQuivey tells the Times “This sudden shift perhaps tells you something about Apple’s understanding of the value of its platform. Apple started making money with devices. Maybe the new thing that everyone recognizes is the unit of economic value is the platform, not the device.”