Apple’s Eddy Cue at SXSW today talked about the company’s just-announced acquisition of Texture, a subscription service that gives readers digital access to some 200 magazines. Cue said Texture represents a logical extension of the Apple News service, providing readers with high-quality news from trusted sources including The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Time and other notable publications.
“We want the best articles, we want them to look amazing and we want them to be from trusted sources,” Cue said in a moderated discussion this morning. “So we don’t have a lot of the issues going around.”
CNN’s Dylan Byers pressed Cue on the question of fake news and how other major tech players, notably Facebook and Google, have struggled with the problems that have arisen from the desire to maintain open platforms that don’t limit free speech.
“We do think free speech is important,” said Cue. “But we don’t think white supremacist [speech] is free speech that out to be out there.”
Cue said Apple has always taken a more aggressively hands-on approach, setting up strict guidelines and rigorously reviewing each app seeking distribution through the App store. Apps that fall short of those guidelines aren’t approved.
“We denied bomb-making apps,” Cue said. “We draw those lines.”
Byers asked Cue about the recent criticism of Apple and other makers of streaming TV devices, in the wake of the Parkland school shooting, or distributing the NRATV channel. Cue said that the service also offers a pro-gun control app (which he didn’t name) in the spirit of spurring public debate.
“From Day 1 we did not want our App Store to be a place where you buy and sell guns. We don’t allow apps to buy or sell guns,” Cue said. “We don’t allow apps that show cruelty to animals.”