Guardian to re-launch iPhone app with subcription option

The Guardian
The UK's Guardian on Thursday announced plans to discontinue its current paid download iPhone app and replace it with a subscription offering that should launch before the end of the year.

The paper's Jonathon Moore announced the change in a blog post outlining the final update to their current app, and plans for the next version.

A subscription for the new app will be £2.99 for six months and £3.99 annually. No pounds-to-dollars conversion is necessary as in the U.S. it will be free, and advertising supported.

Moore did not specify the nature of the subscription mechanism the new app would use, but the timing supports speculation that Apple's long-awaited iTunes subscription option will be arriving this month.

Rupert Murdoch's iPad Daily is also rumored to be launching late this year, or in early 2011, and it too is said to be relying on Apple's new subscription process, according to numerous reports.

However, Friday afternoon Peter Kafka, at All Things Digital, reported that Apple and publishers are still, "miles apart" on a subscription deal.

According to Kafka, Apple has offered publishers 70 percent of subscription sales as well as a customer's name, address and e-mail. Kafka says publishers are still eager to get access to credit card numbers as well.

Without those credit cards, publications will be unable to offer bundled subscriptions -- a mix of print and digital products -- that interest them most.


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