So we were among those questioning
the idea that the iPad would somehow revolutionize the media business by suddenly getting people to pay for content again (though, amusingly, nearly all the criticism on that post focused on whether the iPad would be successful, not about the media business models the post talked about). While it's way
too early to make any sort of judgment on this particular issue, the early data certainly suggests that media companies have their work cut out for them. That's because while big media players appear to be doing well on free apps, in the paid apps category, the big media brands simply aren't topping the charts
. This isn't really a surprise. If you look at the details, it looks like games and specific utilities are topping the charts. As has been noted over and over again, since the iPad comes with a full browser, the media players need to offer something really, really special to actually get people to pay -- and at the prices being offered, most people are just not likely to be interested. It seems likely that the prices will start dropping quickly, though we wonder what these publications will do for the few suckers who paid up early.