Steve Jobs' Apple has gone from underdog geek favorite to the No. 2 company in the world (behind petro-behemoth Exxon Mobil), and the new big dog is facing some backlash for its control-freak ways and "highly closed" approach. Apple's stranglehold is giving app developers, publishers, and service providers fits, reports the Independent, but the question is whether growing discontent will spread to Apple's legions of devotees. "This is a brand that was built on being avant garde, obscure and underground and everybody has now got one," says one expert.
Publishers are peeved with Apple, which insists on taking a 30% cut of sales from the Apple App store, has access to the cheapest available rate for all publications, and controls subscription information. "Apple has been a triumph of marketing and a triumph for the genius at the top of the organization, but it's not in a sustainable position," says a tech writer. "They won't keep pulling rabbits out of hats."