If you look back over the “long” history of computers, you’ll see one of the reasons the PC took off was the wild west vs. Apple’s iron-fisted kingdom rule.

Heck, one might say, in those early days Microsoft was more like open source and Apple was…well…not.

From those early days to today one can point out pros and cons to each sides ways.

This is an argument not to be breached at this time…though based on a article in today’s Wall Street Journal called Apple to Tighten Control on Content, one might start to wonder if this totalitarian role that Apple takes is worth while.

I believe a solid parallel is Google.

Huh?

Let’s compare:

  • Most Google products are free in exchange for your data
    • You give up privacy for Google products
  • Apple charges a premium for products (generally) in exchange for your agreement to live the Apple way
    • You give up freedom to use whatever you want

I both situations…you give up something non-monetary for use of there products.

On the Google side, it is all fine-and-dandy until there is some sort of breach or the “don’t be evil” mantra gets really watered down.

On the Apple side, it is all fine-and-dandy until Apple tightens the grip a little more restricting what people can do.

Don’t people inevitably strive for freedom?  Egypt anyone?

In the article mentioned above, Apple has said, if you provide online content (magazine, newspaper, etc) via an app, you must have folks pay via iTunes.

No big deal right?  Easier for the end user…right?

Well, the fact that this policy forces publishers to then pay Apple 30% (Apple takes a 30% cut of all app revenue)…this means you will pay 30% more.

“No, no…magazines won’t charge 30% more…that is just a cost of doing business…”

Now, put down the apple juice for a second…that is just silly-talk.

Sure the new Daily, the iPad only magazine/newspaper thingy is to charge a fraction of what the Wall Street Journal charges.  But, Mr. Murdoch points out, that the iPad only newspaper has ZERO legacy costs (printing presses, delivery trucks, gas for delivery trucks) while the Wall Street Journal, and any existing “old media” product, does have all of this.

What’s the point here?

The point is more of a question: when will Apple go too far?

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