Amazon caves to Apple, drops Kindle's in-app button

Rhapsody, Google among others to comply with new iOS App Store rules

Amazon today bowed to Apple's newest App Store rules, and removed a link in its iPhone and iPad Kindle apps that took customers directly to its online store.

The move was required to comply with new rules designed to block developers from evading the 30% cut that Apple takes from in-app purchases.

In February, Apple CEO Steve Jobs laid down the law.

"Our philosophy is simple -- when Apple brings a new subscriber to the app, Apple earns a 30% share," said Jobs in a statement released Feb. 15. "When the publisher brings an existing or new subscriber to the app, the publisher keeps 100% and Apple earns nothing."

At the time, Apple said publishers and content sellers would have to remove any links within their apps to outside-the-App Store purchasing options.

Last month, Apple relaxed part of the new rules, allowing developers to price their wares differently on the App Store and their own Web sites. However, the ban on all in-app links to external sales sites still held.

Some content sellers, including Rhapsody, had called Apple's demand for a 30% piece of the revenue pie "economically untenable" and said it would break their business models.

"[Adding] Apple's 30% will exceed the revenue on our product," said Jon Irwin, Rhapsody's president, in an interview shortly after Apple unveiled the new App Store rules last February. "It's not a matter of making less money, it would be zero profit."

Rhapsody updated its iPhone app last week to, among other things, remove the in-app subscribing link.

iPhone and iPad users who update their Amazon Kindle apps to today's version 2.8 can still purchase books from their devices, but must open Safari and manually steer to Amazon.com to do so.

To retain the Kindle Store button in the Kindle apps, users will have to decline today's update, as well as all future updates.

On Monday, Google also complied with Apple's new rules when it re-released Google Books -- which had been yanked from the App Store -- minus an in-app purchasing button.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed. His e-mail address is gkeizer@computerworld.com.

See more articles by Gregg Keizer.

Read more about mobile apps and services in Computerworld's Mobile Apps and Services Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobileAppleoperating systemssoftwareMobile Apps and ServicesMobile OSesMac OS

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Gregg Keizer

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

Taking cybersecurity to the highest level and order now for a special discount on the world’s most awarded and trusted cybersecurity. Be aware without a care!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?