British Tabloid Is Too Hot For The iPhone

Naked “Page 3 Girls” have helped Rupert Murdoch’s British tabloid The Sun sell papers for 40 years now, but they’re not helping the paper break into the mobile marketplace. The Sun was set to be included in Newspaper(s), an iPhone app that allows readers to browse the content of over 50 newspapers, but Apple banned the app from their iTunes store on the grounds that the provocative “Page 3 Girls” are “obscene.”

Newspaper(s) developer Makayama Media resubmitted the app without The Sun and it was accepted by Apple. The application provides users mobile iPhone-optimized versions of international papers including the Washington Post, New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and Le Monde. Newspaper(s) is available for download from Apple’s iTunes Store for 99 cents.

The Sun is owned by a subsidiary of News Corporation, so it may not need to worry about being available on the iPhone. The Wall Street Journal, which is also part of Murdoch’s media empire, says News Corp. is currently “exploring a possible investment” in a competitor to Amazon’s Kindle e-reader. Revenue from portable devices like the iPhone and the Kindle are seen as a major potential source of income for newspapers as print profits continue to freefall.

Today, Amazon debuted the KindleDX, a new version of their popular e-reader and announced partnerships with the Washington Post, the New York Times, and the Boston Globe to sell the device at a reduced price to readers who subscribe to the Kindle editions of those papers. The discounted Kindles will only be offered to buyers who live in areas where home delivery isn’t available. Kindle subscriptions to the New York Times currently cost $13.99 a month. The Washington Post, Boston Globe, and Wall Street Journal all sell monthly Kindle subscriptions for $9.99. In an online chat with readers in February, Times executive editor Bill Keller said the newspaper “makes a modest amount of money” selling subscriptions to the Kindle edition.