Today, FT CEO John Ridding said the day pass and a weekly pass will be powered by PayPal and will begin in the next few months. The move is different from FT.com’s regular annual subscription, which appears as a direct payment.
None of this is quite the “micropayment” model mooted previously. That term usually refers to a per-article fee. “Micropayments simply isn’t going to work if you go to an article and you spend quarter of an hour filling out forms and ticking boxes,” Ridding told the FT”s Digital Media & Broadcasting conference in London.
“Done right, micropayments can support a subscription model. If you get the pricing right for the micropayments, you can actually support an annual subscription.”
On the same panel, New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT) chairman Arthur Sulzberger said NYTimes.com had no plans to use micropayments in in the mix for its forthcoming “metered” model, pricing for which is still unclear: “We haven’t made that decision yet.
How much for the NYT’s flagship iPad app, he was asked? “Whether it’s paid immediately, or paid when we go paid on the web remains to be seen.”
That could mean the app goes free for a year until the metering begins in 2011. Why wait to introduce the model, Sulzberger was asked? “You don’t get any prizes for getting it fast. You get prizes for getting it right. It’s going to take time – we have that time.