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Amazon buckles, removes store link from iOS Kindle app

updated 11:55 am EDT, Mon July 25, 2011

Amazon Kindle iOS app loses store for magazines

Amazon on Monday gave into Apple's demands and pulled the Kindle Store button from its iOS app (free, App Store). Following similar moves by Google, Kobo, and the WSJ, Kindle readers using version 2.8 and up will now have to purchase the books on the web and only sync them through the iPad or iPhone. Apple as of July officially allows only its own store to have a direct purchase link.

In return for the limited access, Amazon is bringing its magazine and newspaper subscriptions to iOS for the first time. Those who have active subscriptions will get new issues automatically and can download older issues through the archives, complete with the color images the Kindle hardware lacks. Publications joining in on the iOS support early on include The Economist and Reader's Digest with more either available or "on the way."

New social aspects have come to the iOS app as well and let users share passages through Facebook or Twitter without having to leave the book.

Apple proposed the rules in February since it believed that all purchasing going through the devices themselves should go through iTunes. The company ended up backing off on a requirement for subscriptions and similar content that it always have the best pricing if the content was available elsewhere. It may have been prompted by an FTC investigation of the original terms.

Amazon was one of the later holdouts and posed a problem for Apple given that the Kindle reader was more popular than iBooks for reading. The timing has been called into question given that Amazon is near launching its own Android tablet and would have an edge for Kindle reading as a result.

New Kindle version 2.8

Earlier Kindle app

by MacNN Staff



    Comment buried. Show
  1. fjose1929

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Shows kindle boondoggle

    Bogus stats, bogus sales. Amazon needs apple but the main reason for the vapor news is to push the stock PPS to the stratosphere and make you know who clean-up.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: boondoggle

    What bogus stats? What bogus sales? Oh, right, it's Amazon (read: not Apple), so they make up all their numbers. Meanwhile, all of Apple's numbers are pure and true.

    And what does any of that have to do with this article?

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Apple as of July officially allows only its own store to have a direct purchase link.

    That is wrong. You can have your own direct purchase link, but you also must include a way to purchase through the apple store to allow Apple to process the payment and take a large cut of the profit.

    Still can't get past the microsoftian feel to this whole requirement.

    I'd really like to know why books are treated special here. Is Apple going to be telling Amazon, eBay, and every other store that have iOS apps that have the capability to purchase goods that they need to allow the users to buy through the apple store as well?

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: incorrect

    Oops, sorry. Didn't realize Apple 'softened' their position on buying within an app to REQUIRE you to buy through the apple store. Gee, how nice of Apple.

  1. Inkling

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Badly written

    Whoever wrote this unsigned article seems clueless

    "Buckles" is hardly inappropriate. It's the typical journalist tendency to turn everything into a simple horse race. Amazon has over four times the ebook market share of Apple. Apple can carry out its threat to yank Amazon's Kindle app, but whether it will benefit is yet to be determined.

    Retailer after retailer has refused to give Apple its absurd 30%. Apple is getting nothing while inviting an FTC investigation. (No signups, mean Apple's offer is so absurd, it is merely a veiled attempt to cripple competitors.) I suspect those who've refused to play Apple's game are already whispering in the FTC's ear. Agreeing not to dictate prices to publishers won't get them off the hook for trying to stop on competition from online retailers.

    "In return for limited access" is also a stupid remark. It suggests that Amazon came, cap in hand, to Apple and said, "Please sir, would you carry my app if I add these new features." Just yesterday at Teleread I predicted that Amazon would 'get back' at Apple by adding features to their Kindle app that leave iBooks "eating Kindle's dust."

    That's exactly what's happened. Amazon's Kindle ecosystem not only has more features than Apple's iBookstore, it's adding new ones much faster. Apple management is making a big mistake thinking they can leverage their device dominance into ebook dominance. Consumers will be looking at features. Kindle apps run on everything. Apple has yet to even announce an iBooks app for Macs, much less PCs and Androids.

    "Apple proposed the rules...." Duh! Apple proposed nothing. It dictated. It claiming to be applying an earlier stated policy, although no one at Apple has been clear about precisely what that policy was or is.

    Most news stories are suggesting that Amazon's upcoming tablet will be a direct competitor to the iPad. I doubt that. Amazon's management may the same unhappy megalomania as that at Apple, but it isn't stupid. The iPad aims broadly at content creation and consumption. Look for Amazon's tablet to focus on content consumption. Like the ePaper Kindles, it will offer a number of 'included with the package' benefits not offered by Apple. Free or highly discounted movie streaming is one of the most obvious. Amazon won't directly take on all those thousands of iPad apps. It will build on its strengths in content.

  1. hayesk

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Sony's turn

    Now it's time for Sony to remove their app store link and re-submit.

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