The day after Apple finally made their in-app subscription plan official, Google announced their new One Pass program, which is their own subscription plan. Apple requires a 30% cut of all subscription and in-app revenues. Google asks for 10%. But TechCrunch points out that Google is offering publishers a whole lot more:
Here’s the key nugget that everyone seems to be overlooking:
With Google One Pass, publishers can maintain direct relationships with their customers and give readers access to digital content across websites and mobile apps.
I’ve confirmed that this means that customer information collected by Google will be shared with publishers. What kind of information? Name, zip code, and most importantly, email addresses. Billing information will not be shared, we’re told. Users can choose to opt-out of sharing this information, but they’ll have to explicitly do so. By default, the information is shared.
What this means is that as far as subscriptions go, the choice between Apple and Google is basically the same as it's always been: Apple offers a highly controlled (publishers and other critics would say too-controlled) experience. Google offers a less-tame array of options, but in return it makes your personal information into a commodity.