Apple has rejected a software e-book reader application from Sony, insisting that in-app purchases are made through the Apple payment system.
Apple's developer guidelines are clear that applications must use the Apple e-commerce system to process purchases so the terms of rejection have been previously known.
"Unfortunately, with little notice, Apple changed the way it enforces its rules and this will prevent the current version of the Reader for iPhone from being available in the app store," Sony wrote on the firm's Reader Store.
"We opened a dialog with Apple to see if we can come up with an equitable resolution but reached an impasse at this time."
However Amazon's Kindle application uses a similar system to handle e-book purchases, merely syncing up to the Amazon cloud and making e-books available to read on iOS devices which have been bought from Amazon directly.
Bookseller Barnes & Noble is another firm that has been allowed to publish an e-reader application which accesses books bought directly.
Apple's 30 per cent revenue cut has the potential to be a considerable revenue generator if the company forces e-readers to buy books through the App Store.
The firm may have judged that rejecting applications from the major US book-sellers would turn into PR disaster as owners of Kindles and Nooks ask why they are unable to read their books on iOS devices.
Sony said: "We're exploring other avenues to bring the Reader experience to Apple mobile devices."