Apple's subscription policy convinced me to sell my iPad

Summary:I have been using my iPad less frequently recently, but have hesitated selling it. That changed today with Apple's new policy for subscriptions, as I have no desire to give Apple 30 percent of those fees to Cupertino.

I like Apple products, but I don't patronize them exclusively. I am a firm believer in embracing the technology that does what I need, and I like spreading my money around to keep things even. I bought an iPad when it was first released as I knew it would fit my needs at the time. Late last year I grabbed a smaller tablet that has fit my lifestyle better, and even though the iPad is used less frequently, I hesitated to sell it because I like it. That changed today with Apple's new policy for subscriptions, as I have no desire to give Apple 30 percent of those fees to Cupertino. My iPad is now for sale.

I won't rehash the policy as you can find it all over the web, but in a nutshell Apple is forcing all companies that sell subscriptions on iOS devices to give them 30 percent of the loot. That's significant as subscriptions are not the same as app sales, they are ongoing and often auto-renewed when the subscription period ends. That means Apple can get a healthy cut of each company's fees ad infinitum.

I like good software, services and subscription content and enjoy rewarding the companies that produce them with my subscription cash. I have a real problem with a company that is simply providing another vehicle for that content to take such a healthy cut, and deny alternate methods of selling the content to the providers.

I pay Pandora for my music subscription because it is a great service, not because it's available on the iPad. I listen to it everywhere, on all my mobile devices. The same is true of my Kindle ebook library, I buy it because I can read it on anything. I will not give Apple 30 percent of the cost of those ebooks.

So Apple convinced me to sell my iPad, which I intend to do shortly. I won't miss it, the control Apple is exerting over partners (and they are partners) made up my mind. I won't be getting an iPad 2, either. I'll still use some Apple products, but only those I need to get work done.

Topics: Apple, iPad, Mobility


James Kendrick has been using mobile devices since they weighed 30 pounds, and has been sharing his insights on mobile technology for almost that long. Prior to joining ZDNet, James was the Founding Editor of jkOnTheRun, a CNET Top 100 Tech Blog that was acquired by GigaOM in 2008 and is now part of that prestigious tech network. James' w... Full Bio

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