Instead of launching an iPad app for its video-streaming service Vudu, Walmart has launched an iPad-optimized website — bypassing the 30% cut in revenue that Apple takes from all in-app purchases.
Customers can now browse, rent or watch a movie by launching the Vudu site on their iPads’ browsers. From the site, they can set up an app-style shortcut button on their homescreens for easy access.
Walmart isn’t the only content publisher opting out of the app store. Amazon launched an HTML5-based Kindle Cloud Reader Wednesday, the Financial Times released a web-based app in June, and ebook seller Kobo is also building an HTML5 ereader app.
Some of these HTML5 apps do come with extra features, but it’s clear their main purpose is to avoid Apple’s 30% revenue share and app subscription policy. If they are successful, it’s likely that more publishers will follow suit.
“Apple said from the get-go that we want the iPad to be the best web browsing experience anywhere, and we take them at their word,” Vudu General Manager Edward Lichty told SFGate.