The Financial Times has become the first big name to pull its iOS apps as a result of Apple's new app subscription rules. The company confirmed on Wednesday that it had failed to come to a compromise with Apple over its requirement that subscription payments run through the App Store, and has therefore removed its iPhone and iPad apps from public availability.
"We removed the app after amicable discussions with Apple,” FT spokesperson Tom Glover told All Things D. "iTunes will remain an important channel for new and existing advertising-based apps."
Earlier this year, Apple began putting pressure on the makers of subscription- and content-based apps—such as Amazon's Kindle app or the plethora of apps issued by magazine, newspaper, and video publishers—to either begin selling that content from within the App Store or ditch the links to outside stores. "All we require is that, if a publisher is making a subscription offer outside of the app, the same (or better) offer be made inside the app, so that customers can easily subscribe with one-click right in the app," then-CEO Steve Jobs said in a statement.
Apple originally issued a deadline of June 30 for app makers to comply, but after backing off on its same-or-better price requirement, the company let things slide for another month. In late July, various iOS reading apps finally began making changes, but not the kind of changes Apple was trying to pressure them into. Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, the Wall Street Journal, and others all simply removed their links to their own outside content stores as to comply with the rules—none began selling content or subscriptions from within Apple's own system.
The Financial Times was one of the few major holdouts when it came to complying with Apple's new rules—not surprising, since FT...