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Google’s digital newsstand

Google has approached major publishers to create a digital newsstand through which they will be able to sell content. Google is likely to take a smaller percentage compared to what Apple charges through its iTunes store.

Google is said to be in touch with several leading magazine publishers to launch a digital newsstand for its Android platform. Through the digital newsstand, content publishers will get access to one more platform to sell their content on.

According to a Wall Street Journal report, which didn’t quote any official sources, Google is likely to make its proposition attractive to publishers by asking for a smaller cut compared to what is charged by Apple and Amazon, which provide a similar service. The story goes on to say that Apple has plans to implement some changes in the Apple iTunes store, and will make it easier for magazines to sell subscriptions.

Google is in discussion with Conde Nast, Time Warner Inc’s Time Inc unit and Hearst Corp. According to the report, the company will enable publishers to access personal data of users who buy content from these publishers. Google began to sell digital books through an online store last month, thus entering a market which has been dominated by Amazon so far. Apple also sells electronic books for its iPad tablet.

Having access to the personal data of the customers is essential for content publishers to target content and ads. Different apps from publishers offer different methods for buying content online, while Google proposes to build a common infrastructure for all content publishers. Apple also may share personal data of users with publishers, though it might only do this with the users’ consent.

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