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To date Apple have “permitted” publishers to have apps on the iPhone and iPad that are media readers for content that is purchased outside of Apple’s platform. Spotify is a well known example. They have recently decided to levy a 30% toll on such subscriptions.

Personally I think it is unwise to **** with the National Press. I foresee a large number of newspaper and magazine leaders about the threat the Apple poses to free speech, the free press and free cash flow. On this occasion I totally agree. I think that device-neutrality is essential to support free speech.

The BBC who is not a totally disinterested player (iPlayer for iPad anyone) reports it here together with an introduction to Google’s response Google One Pass.

via BBC News – Pressure mounts over Apple’s 30% subscription charge.

In practise I suspect that Apple will lose this battle. Publishers simply don’t have any money to give to Apple. They are skint.