A principio de semana, Apple presentó su modelo de suscripción de contenidos … las Apps que permitan la compra de contenidos para las mismas (aplicaciones de publicaciones, principalmente, aunque supongo que juegos que permitan nuevos «módulos» y sin duda las aplicaciones de libros) deberán permitir la compra del contenido desde la propia aplicación cediendo a Apple el 30% por su intermediación. Además, los productos ofrecidos para la compra en la web por ejemplo, deberán ser ofertados obligatoriamente al mismo precio o un precio inferior a través de la compra desde la aplicación («in-App»).

Esto ofrece al usuario un gran comodidad pero recorta los beneficios del «editor», de quien publica el contenido. Será suficiente el incremento del volumen de transacciones que se supone traerá la facilidad del App Store para compensar el recorte del margen de beneficio. Un interesante artículo al respecto considerando todas las opciones es el de Tech Crunch:

» … Apple has built a new backend system that any of these apps can take advantage of. And when they do, it will give them within one-click access to some 100 million-plus credit cards. As Apple puts it, “Subscriptions purchased from within the App Store will be sold using the same App Store billing system that has been used to buy billions of apps and In-App Purchases.” Apple knows that a ton of users will use such a system when it’s in place. And so they want their cut for enabling that — but only when that system actually brings in new subscribers.

They’re making a bet that it will. And you can bet that for any companies that play along, it will. And that’s perhaps the most overlooked key to all of this so far. Apple’s aim here is not only to make money, but to enable everyone to make money with a system that actually works. How are they going to do that? By doing something that all companies say they do, but few actually really do: focus on the consumer.

This in-app subscription system will undoubtedly be one of the most user-friendly systems that subscription billing has ever seen. Actually, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say it will be the most user-friendly. Apple has created a centralized place to handle a wide variety of subscriptions spanning many different companies. All streamlined. All with one-click capabilities. No need to enter billing addresses. No need to enter credit card numbers. If you want to unsubscribe, it’s one-click. Change you subscription terms? One-click. What was once a nightmare of dozens, or hundreds, or thousands of different backend systems (or worse, phone calls) is now all taken care of thanks to the iTunes ecosystem.

And that’s exactly why consumers would use such a system. And it may finally be the answer for getting people to pay for content such as magazines, online.

Further, Apple absolutely had to force the prices to be the same (or better) as they are outside the app environment to ensure the system would work at launch. Without this key component, the system would be DOA. Companies would undoubtedly be okay with this system if they could jack up the prices to pay for Apple’s 30 percent cut, but that would undermine the entire system. Apple’s stance on this will piss companies off, but it’s the right one for consumers.

But all of this is also a double-edged sword. …»

Google presentaba 24 horas después su modelo de negocio con el mismo fin, Google One Pass. La diferencia, el margen que se queda Google por la transacción, un 10% frente al 30% de Apple. La otra diferencia, se orienta más a la compra en la web del contenido que se cargará en la A.App (Android App) y le falta el nivel de integración que se supone deberá dar al modelo de Apple un fuerte respaldo de los usuarios. Leemos en Silicon

» … Google One Pass aims to offer a broad solution for online publishers grappling with how to charge readers. It will allow publishers to avoid having to build their own payment or sign-in systems, and can identify readers logging in across various devices. In that way, it competes with services like Journalism Online’s Press+, which offers easy login and payment technology to online publishers.

But unlike Apple’s service, Google’s is aimed more for use on websites than in apps. Hornung said publishers can use One Pass in an app only if the mobile operating system’s guidelines allow it.

Publishers selling content within an app running on Google’s Android operating system, for instance, would have to comply with Android’s revenue share, which gives publishers 70 percent. However, unlike Apple, Google allows apps to redirect customers to a mobile Web browser to make a purchase, where publishers can use Google One Pass and keep 90 percent of the revenue. …»

En Mac Daily News profundizaban sobre los problemas que puede encontrar el modelo de Google:

“… One of the reasons why users of Apple products like the iPhone and the iPad seem a lot more willing to pay for things like apps is because the experience is so much better and paying is so easy. But despite that, magazine and newspaper publishers have have had little success so far in getting people to pay for their apps. Why would it be any easier with Google’s One Pass?… «

Ponerse a criticar a Apple y alabar a Google perece lo obvio …  hoy me sorprendía al leer en Mac Daily News ese margen en el caso de Amazon, un 70%, que parece rápidamente se han avenido a ajustar a la baja ante la noticia de los márgenes de sus competidores:

“… When rumors of Apple’s typical 30/70 split (Apple/publisher) for an eBook store became too realistic to ignore, Amazon moved quickly to match the terms (though they didn’t quite do so, putting a few conditions in place),” Tom Reestman writes for The Small Wave.

Reestman writes, “Until then Amazon had been taking up to 70% and no one questioned it or cared… It’s hard to believe those claiming outrage aren’t primarily motivated by the fact that this is Apple, and any Apple headline is ‘news.’ Let’s face it, ‘Amazon’s 70% Cut is Evil and Publishers Will Perish’ is an article few would have read. …”

Podemos tildar a Apple de codiciosa, al fin y al cabo es una empresa cuyo objetivo se supone debe ser maximizar su beneficio, pero desde luego es la que parece conjugar de mejor manera a usuarios y proveedores de contenido. El iTunes Store ya fue un paso en ese sentido, seguido de la App Store, la Mac Store … todo muy fácil. En Twitter lo comentaba @wicho:

«Leo una reseña de un disco. Me interesa. Voy a la iTunes Store. Lo hay. Lo compro. Tardo segundos.  Eso funciona. #LeySinde no.»

Yo me unía con algo parecido, que justo hice esta semana, leí la crítica de Stone in the Water y me fui al iTunes Store, lo preescuché (1 minuto de cada canción) y lo compré.

Es el famoso ecosistema Apple del que ya hemos comentado en alguna ocasión, el que está despertando sospechas de práctcas monopolísticas (aunque en absoluto parece que una demanda en ese sentido pueda prosperar, porque sólo en este campo hay muchas opciones  para disponer del contenido), pero el ecosistema Apple no es un monopolio, es un entorno donde todo va, fácil, suave, pagando 😉

Como el artículo de Tech Crunch, la realidad del ecosistema Apple es simple aunque quizá sea dura.

» … Company X changes something, therefore Company X is “evil”. Over the years, this has been true of Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, etc. But no company has seen this vitriol to the extent of Apple over the past few years. And curiously, it seems correlated to their meteoric rise in power and profitability.

But if Apple is really evil — or at the very least, if several major moves they’ve made over the past few years have been evil — shouldn’t the opposite be true? Shouldn’t Apple be losing a ton of customers who are fed up with their cruelty and inhumane torture of developers, users, and the world in general? Makes sense, right?

… Instead, Apple has perfected the art of making money. To some, that will still seem evil. Hell, to a few that will likely seem synonymous with evil. But that’s an extremely myopic view of things.

The absolute key to Apple’s ability to make money is the ability to make products that customers want. This includes both their tangible hardware products, the software that runs on them, and the underlying infrastructure that fuses it all together. And that includes things like the App Store, which today’s latest change affects. Apple makes good products that people want, so they make a lot of money. The two are absolutely tied together. If they didn’t do the former, they wouldn’t get the latter.

… The same 30 percent fee they currently take from the thousands of app developers collectively making billions of dollars off of the App Store. And the same 30 percent fee they currently take for all other types of in-app purchases.

You don’t hear those developers complaining about Apple’s cut. But this situation is different because it’s a de-facto change in policy.

… If Apple is in the wrong here, developers will stop developing for iOS (a privilege which they pay Apple $99 a year for on top of the 30 percent app sales cut). And customers will stop buying iOS products. Those two factors will amplify one another. And the Apple ecosystem will wither.

… Apple is so “evil” that they have more users than ever giving them more money than ever. Either the entire world is brainwashed or most users interpret these maneuvers as a part of Apple’s overall goal to make products that are consumer-friendly. Which, again, in turn, makes them money.

… Still, natural or not, just like Google, Apple would then have to be careful about what policies they implemented. With great power, comes great responsibility, and all that. But we’re not there yet. It does look like competition is coming — and fast. And so Apple should be allowed to implement the changes to their ecosystem as they see fit. The market will decide if they’re the right ones or not.

And that really is the key to all of this. It’s so obvious, but so many seem to be looking past it. Apple is not the great dictator of the world. We’re all free to not buy their products and to use other ones. But despite all the bluster about Apple being “evil” over the past several years, this has not happened. And it’s because they’re not evil. They’re simply a free market machine churning out great product after great product thanks to (and not in spite of) many of the policies they put in place.

But that could all change tomorrow. …»

Os recomiendo que no dejéis de leer todas las entradas en caso de que no lo hayáis hecho  … lo aquí expuesto es sólo un detalle de las mismas que bien merecen su tiempo :-))