面对苹果公司的苛刻条件，部分出版商选择了妥协。而包括《财富》的东家——时代集团（Time Inc.）在内的另一些出版商目前仍未与苹果达成协议。还有些出版商，如《金融时报》（Financial Times），则干脆撤出了苹果的应用商店，推出了自己的网页应用。其他出版商则纷纷威胁要将他们的业务搬到谷歌的Android平台上，因为谷歌没有类似的限制。
苹果似乎也明白了其中传递的信息。本周一，也就是在距离新规则原定的生效日期还有两个半星期的时候，苹果公司废止了要求所有播放音乐、视频、书籍等内容的应用必须在应用内销售完全一致的内容、并与苹果分成的规定。科技博客All Things D的彼得•卡夫卡写道：
Last February, when Apple (AAPL) announced the rules by which publishers and other content providers could offer subscriptions through its App Store, Steve Jobs made them sound like the most reasonable thing in the world.
"Our philosophy is simple," he wrote. "When Apple brings a new subscriber to the app, Apple earns a 30 percent share; when the publisher brings an existing or new subscriber to the app, the publisher keeps 100 percent and Apple earns nothing. 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."
What sounded reasonable to Jobs, however, sounded crazy to publishers. Moreover, it threatened the very existence of some of the most popular third party applications in the App Store, including Amazon's (AMZN) Kindle, Zinio's magazine store and Hulu Plus, a joint venture of NBC (NBC), Fox (NWS) and ABC (DIS), among others. See: Steve Jobs to pubs: Our way or highway.
Some publishers caved and went along with Apple's terms. Some, including Time Inc. (TWX), which publishes this blog, met them half-way. Some, like the Financial Times, pulled out of the App Store and went with a Web app instead. Others threatening to take their business to Google's (GOOG) Android, which had no such restrictions.
Apple seems to have gotten the message. On Monday, two and a half weeks before the rules were scheduled to take effect, Apple changed them. It scrapped the requirement that apps that play content like music, movies, and books to also sell the same content within the app itself, and share the revenue with Apple. As All Things D's Peter Kafka put it:
"Now, apps can offer access to content purchased outside of Apple's walls, as long as the app doesn't have a "buy" button that connects consumers directly to an external store. That is: Apple won't make it easy for users to buy in-app content without going through Apple's store, but it won't outlaw it, either."
Amazon, which currently uses a button in its Kindle app that takes customers to the Amazon website to purchase books, will have to rewrite its app. But if it wants to keep the revenue flowing from Apple users, it should be able to design a workaround.
Below: The old terms and the new (via MacRumors).
11.13 Apps can read or play approved content (magazines, newspapers, books, audio, music, video) that is sold outside of the app, for which Apple will not receive any portion of the revenues, provided that the same content is also offered in the app using IAP [in-app purchase] at the same price or less than it is offered outside the app. This applies to both purchased content and subscriptions.
11.13 Apps that link to external mechanisms for purchases or subscriptions to be used in the app, such as a "buy" button that goes to a web site to purchase a digital book, will be rejected
11.14 Apps can read or play approved content (specifically magazines, newspapers, books, audio, music, and video) that is subscribed to or purchased outside of the app, as long as there is no button or external link in the app to purchase the approved content. Apple will not receive any portion of the revenues for approved content that is subscribed to or purchased outside of the app.