If it felt like Apple as lightening up on their App Store approval guidelines, think again. According to The New York Times, a recent scuffle with Sony has spurred Apple to clarify that their App Store rules on in0app purchases are going to be more strictly followed. The whole issue came up when Sony’s Reader app was rejected from the App Store a few days ago. Apple objected to the Reader having its own eBook store, and no option for Apple’s own in-app purchases. This, says Apple, is a violation of their terms of service.
This brings up an uncomfortable dilemma for other apps, like Amazon’s Kindle for instance. Both the Kindle app and the Sony app bring up an imbedded web browser to make content purchases, but Apple is now saying that developers must provide that same content for in-app purchases using Apple’s system. Not coincidentally, that means Apple would get their 30% cut. “It’s the opposite of what we wanted to bring to the market,” Sony’s Steve Haber said. “We always wanted to bring the content to as many devices as possible, not one device to one store.”
This does not mean that any content purchased the old way won’t be available. Indeed, you can keep doing that. Apple is just asserting their authority to require that users are presented with in-app purchases too. A cunning way to get people more invested in the Apple ecosystem. How does this sit with you?