Barely had the ink dried on Apple’s press release yesterday announcing its subscription service when Google threw down the gauntlet today with its rival One Pass service for the struggling community of content publishers.
At first glance, One Pass (powered by Google’s CheckOut payment system) looks like a better option for content publishers compared to the extortionist gimme, gimme 30% demanded by Apple.
Besides taking only 10% of the transaction value, Google’s terms are also more publisher friendly. For instance, publishers have greater access to their subscriber information.
Also, readers buying from a One Pass publisher can access their content on tablets, smartphones and web sites via a single sign-on with an email and password.
One Pass lets publishers experiment with different models — offering subscriptions, metered access, “freemium” content or single articles for sale from their web sites or mobile apps. The service also allows publishers to provide existing print subscribers free (or discounted) access to digital content.
One Pass is currently available in France, Germany, Spain, the UK, US and Canada.
Will It Fly?
We’re skeptical that One Pass or the Apple service will mean much for publishers because of consumers’ stubborn refusal to pay for most online content.
And with the cornucopia of free porn sites, we doubt even the cum-and-get-me-girls are making money from their online calisthenics.
The carnage that’s already hit the U.S. print news media will only get worse.