The Wall Street Journal reports that Time Warner, the parent company of publisher Time, Inc., has finalized a deal with Apple that allows subscribers of its print magazines to download digital versions for the iPad for free. The arrangement goes into effect today and includes Time, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated magazines and their respective iPad apps.
Starting Monday, subscribers to Sports Illustrated, Time and Fortune magazines will be able to access the iPad editions via the apps, which will be able to authenticate them as subscribers.
The Time Magazine iPad app has already received an update this morning that allows subscribers to the print version to enter their credentials to access digital issues at no additional charge:
The evidence of this arrangement between Time Warner and Apple first appeared last August when subscribers to the print version of People Magazine gained the ability to download digital versions through the iPad app for free. We’re not quite sure what took so long for other magazines in Time Warner’s lineup to follow suit but it’s a welcome change nonetheless.
The issue between publishers and Apple appears to hinge on the subscriber information that Apple is reluctant to provide to publishers according to the Wall Street Journal:
Time Inc. and other major publishers have yet to agree with Apple on terms for selling subscriptions to their iPad editions, the next step beyond making them available to existing print subscribers. Talks are hung up on Apple’s resistance to sharing information with publishers about their iPad customers, which publishers say is critical to applying the “TV everywhere” model to magazines.