How many people might you expect to click “Allow” when face with Apple’s forbidding dialog asking you to “Share Your Information?” with publishers? I (and likely many publishers, too) expected very few, but according to a couple of very reliable sources (via Fortune), about 50 percent of iOS subscribers are agreeing to pass their info along.
Apple’s in-app subscriptions, which are starting to gain widespread acceptance among publishers, including major players like Hearst and Condé Nast, require that applications ask a user whether or not they want to share personal information such as a subscriber’s name, email and zip code with the app’s developer. This step means publishers don’t necessarily gain the valuable customer data they can then use for targeted marketing efforts, which is a big part of a subscriber’s value to magazine companies. It’s a big reason why publishers weren’t exactly thrilled with Apple’s in-app subscription terms.
As it turns out, publishers need not have been so concerned. About 50 percent of iOS subscribers opt-in to information sharing, according to Forbes, which confirmed the figure with Apple VP of Internet Services Eddy Cue. Cue was on hand at the launch of The Daily , the first app to feature in-app subscriptions, and seems to be the man in the know when it comes to Apple subs.
Forbes cites this statistic as being a driving force behind the willingness of publishers to sign on with Apple’s in-app subscription plans. If publishers can maintain a good percentage of its lucrative customer information, while also building their subscriber base by appealing to the growing iPad reader crowd, it’s no wonder they’re willing to play by Apple’s rules.
Of course, there are still some holdouts. Time, Inc. hasn’t announced any plans to offer in-app subscriptions yet (though it has made iPad editions free for existing print subscribers), and you can bet that Apple’s 30 percent cut of all revenue made through subscriptions has something to do with any reluctance that remains. But as with music before it, Apple is counting on its value to publishers to become evident, and these opt-in information sharing numbers are a good start.