Financial Times app bypasses Apple and iTunes

Popular newspaper the Financial Times has admitted that the company is in what they like to call a “Mexican standoff” with Apple over their current digital strategy.

According to The Guardian, the Financial Times has decided to launch its own web-based application that allows readers to completely bypass Apple’s iTunes Store and Google’s Android Market yet retain a great reading experience and an easy to use UI.

Rob Grimshaw, the managing director for the Financial Times said that accepting Apple’s print app subscription terms would be a “backward step”. The move comes just a day after Apple announced news of the company’s brand new Newsstand service for both digital newspapers and online magazines.

Apple’s upcoming iOS 5.0 release will come with 'Newsstand', a new subscription-based application that has a ton of newspaper and magazine companies on board, including New York Times, SF Chronicle, Daily Telegraph, and more.

Grimshaw told The Guardian "It would be a backward step for us to go into relationships where we are denied access directly to readers, the existing business has been driven by that," He also went on to say that "We are also wary what we pay to third parties. With the existing model we don't pay anything, now while I don't rule it out giving away a third of the revenue is not right." Pointing directly to Apple’s 30% cut of subscription fee revenues.

The Financial Times has not been the only newspaper publisher to show a dislike to joining up to Apple’s new subscription policy, with many other companies complaining about the amount the Cupertino company takes away from them.

The Financial Times has a large digital subscriber base of around 224,000 users and has been charging for online content for many years. Grimshaw stated that around 15 percent of its new digital subscribers were heading to the site via mobile devices.

The new FT Web App has been built using HTML5 web standards and allows features such as offline reading and a large range of video content. To access the Financial Times new web application on your iPad or iPhone, just head to http://apps.ft.com

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