Time Inc., the largest magazine company in the United States, has stopped resisting Apple. Striking a deal similar to that signed by its major competitors a year ago, the Time Warner-owned publisher agreed on Wednesday to sell subscriptions to all 20 of its titles, which include high-circulation weeklies such as Time, People and Sports Illustrated, through the Newsstand section of Apple’s iOS App Store.
The decision represents a considerable change of heart for a publisher that was “once the magazine industry’s most ardent opponent of selling subscriptions through Apple,” according to Amy Chozick of the New York Times.
Until now, Time Inc.’s readers have only been able to access single issues of the iPad editions of its magazines through the Newsstand app, with print subscribers alone receiving regular automatic uploads.
Time Inc.’s recalcitrance toward Apple since the launch of Newsstand last fall was motivated in part by the hard bargain that the technology giant drives with publishers. Beyond the profit share arrangement whereby Apple demands a contentious 30% commission on subscriptions purchased through its Newsstand, Apple’s previous unwillingness to share the personal information of iOS magazine subscribers with publishers was a deal-breaker for Time Inc.