They say that you shouldn’t be able to see how the sausage is made. It seems like you should not watch how the sausage is sold.
John Koetsier points out that Apple has run ads for a variety of apps, in direct competition to the ads running by the app companies. The difference, of course, is that the Apple ads direct traffic to the App Store where Apple takes 30 percent.
The use of the word “quietly” here is a bit absurd: What is Apple supposed do, publish an advertisement claiming it’s taking down ads? It is also unlikely that any of the mentioned app vendors — Tinder, Bumble and HBO among others — were aware of this activity until recently. These companies have marketing departments and are not indie developers. They are well-aware of the advertising landscape for their products.
This doesn’t mean what Apple does isn’t gross. Or net as the case may be.
This would be all well and good if Apple were just adding to the advertising being done for the apps, but the online ad market being what it is and largely controlled by a company that shall remain nameless (feel free to “Google” its name if you’re curious), the ads compete with vendor ads for both space and cost as Apple’s bids drive up the prices for ads.
According to Apple, all is well.
…the company says that it regularly engages in conversation with developers about the ads it places and many developers express their appreciation for this support.
Many people say we are the best.
The Macalope wonders whether the conversation is one of “calling them up, discussing it”, or sending them an email saying “We have updated the App Store Terms and Conditions, pray that we don’t update them further “”
Apple indicated that this is no different from retailers running ads for the products they sell, and is a very standard business model.
Is this just like a grocery shop advertising Hellmann’s Mayonnaise? (Or Best Foods mayonnaise, depending on where you are on the correct coast. No the Macalope won’t say which one. No. People don’t usually buy mayonnaise directly through Unilever. Unilever owns both Hellmann’s Foods and Best Foods. Even fewer know that the websites for Hellmann’s and Best Foods are weird mirror universe-type experiences that remind the Macalope that Fringe was a pretty darn good TV show.
Unilever may sell you mayo directly, but it won’t sell you one jar. Bev from Lansing, who brings the same potato salad to every barbecue, is not qualified to buy in bulk quantities. You can, and people do, buy apps and subscriptions from vendor’s websites all the time. It’s not something Apple has talked about, but people did it before the App Store.
Apple loves to compare digital goods with physical goods. “This is just like with physical goods!” Oh, you mean the goods that you don’t take any cut on the sale of from iOS apps? “Oh, not that much like physical goods.” Then you mean like the physical goods that vendors can put all kinds of information on to direct buyers to their website to find more informat- “WE SAID NOT THAT MUCH LIKE PHYSICAL GOODS.”
This technique is not new. Apple claims that it has been doing this for five year. This could be a story because app makers are trying to fuel the flames for legal or legislative action against Apple’s App store rules. It could be, and it’s good.
While the Macalope isn’t sure where the line is on sideloading, he is very certain of where it is on developers telling people in their app that they can subscribe to their website. Developers should 100 percent be allowed to let people click a button to go and subscribe on their website. It should be easy to pay within the AppStore ecosystem. This will encourage Apple to make it even more convenient. This is supposed to be Apple’s added value.
The most irritating company in the history is the one that tries to maximize its wealth at the expense of others, but doesn’t provide any real value.
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The Macalope, in addition to being mythical beasts, is not employed by Macworld. The Macalope can criticize any media outlet at will. Even ours.
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