News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch has made no secret of his disdain for the Amazon Kindle business model, punctuating recent earnings calls with remarks that the e-commerce giant pockets too much of the subscription fees for the Wall Street Journal and other content. On Thursday morning his company’s actions spoke louder than words, as it announced an exclusive deal with Sony, Amazon’s top rival in the e-reader business.
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Sony’s Daily Edition device will be the first to receive automatic wireless updates of The Wall Street Journal, New York Post, and the MarketWatch Web site. Subscriptions will be offered for a monthly charge of $15 for The Journal, and between $10 and $20 for the other options. For an extra fee, subscribers can choose to receive an update when the markets close in the afternoon, in addition to the morning news.
News Corp. already makes The Journal available for $15 per month on the Kindle, but users of the device are forced to manually download the newspaper each morning. In theory, automatic updates could be made available to the Kindle — but Murdoch’s belief that his company’s cut of $6 to $6.50 is barring any such arrangement. Some speculated News Corp. would walk away from the Kindle altogether, but the new “exclusive” agreement for automatic updates on Sony readers appears to be the best counter the company could muster.
Read More: by Douglas MacMillan, Business Week
Photo credit: World Economic Forum (Creative Commons)