The iPad hasn’t quite yet saved the starving publishing industry like initially imagined, but Apple apparently still has a few tricks up its sleeve. According to a recent report in the Mercury News, Apple might soon announce a new iPad subscription plan for newspapers where it will reportedly take a 30% cut of all subscriptions along with 40% of all ads embedded within.
The Cupertino company has agreed to provide an opt-in function for subscribers to allow Apple to share with publishers their information, which includes vital data that news organizations use to attract advertisers, industry sources say.
Publishers “want the data of their customers so they can integrate it into their circulation database so they know who their customers are,” said Fidler, who works with many newspapers.
While a handful of national papers already offer app subscriptions to iPad users, major metropolitan papers across the country are getting ready to roll out their own publication apps and have been in discussions with Apple. Industry leaders hope tablet devices and subscription-based digital editions can help newspapers stem, if not reverse, losses incurred after they began offering up content online for free years ago.
Giving that much control away to Apple is undeniably daunting, but with most Newspapers struggling to stay afloat, getting into bed with Apple may be their only hope.