Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Google's Subscription Plan Plus

Google's new plan... no frills on the logo, at least.
It didn't take long for Google to respond to Apple's new subscription plan; one day, in fact. Google announced their One Pass system yesterday, and it looks like a direct shot at Apple's plan. Apple's been gathering some criticism for their plan for several reasons: Publishers don't like having to give up 30% of their subscription revenue, and they want all the customer data (Apple allows the customer to decide whether or not to give that data to the publisher). Streaming music services are complaining about the 30% cut because they don't have that much margin to give up; effectively Apple's plan means they can't offer their services. (Gee, I wonder if Apple's rumored new streaming music subscription plan might have something to do with this?)

Google now steps in with a streamlined plan that offers a very light footprint, both technically and financially. Google promises that it's easy to implement and doesn't weigh down your web site or application, while the financial cut is rumored to be only 10% instead of 30%. Plus, with Google's One Pass you can offer all sorts of payment plans:

"Publishers have control over how users can pay to access content and set their own prices. They can sell subscriptions of any length with auto-renewal, day passes (or other durations), individual articles or multiple-issue packages. Google One Pass also enables metered models, where a publisher can provide some content or a certain number of visits for free, but can charge frequent visitors or those interested in premium content based on the business model that the publisher prefers. It also allows publishers to grant access to existing subscribers through a coupon-based system — so it is easy to give full online access to current customers. Publishers can give their customers codes verifying their subscription status, or can seamlessly offer content to existing subscribers via solutions enabled by Google One Pass."

So the battle is joined. Android tablets and phones will have a competing option to Apple's. Better still, Google's One Pass works on web sites as well, offering a comprehensive solution. It's not clear if this takes in micropayments as PayPal's plan does; Google intends it to be used for subscriptions, but it's flexible enough to handle other types of content. Read more about it here

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