The number one rule of Apple it’s a lot simple, “The sale of good digital services within an app must use the in-app purchase”, then pay the Cupertino house one commission of 30% (best iPhone apps).
This “law”, repeated not unlike the rules of Fight Club led to the now historic clash with Epicwhich resulted in a kind of opening, with the ability for developers to direct their users to other payment systems (partially). But this system isn’t quite free, and while it contrasts with Spotify’s ambitions sale of audiobooks on the other hand it is leading to one collision with Half. Let’s see in detail how.
Apple versus Meta: even advertisements have to pay commissions
An important part of the business from Half resides, as for many giants of the Web, in advertising. Imagine you have a Facebook or Instagram page, and you want to increase your followers. What do you do? Use the app’s paid advertising service, which gives you greater visibility.
But let’s go back to the first opening sentence. “The sale of goods ei digital services within an app must use thein-app purchase“.
Advertisements are digital services so they should go through the in-app purchase and accordingly pay the 30% commission to Apple, correct? Not really. This August the Wall Street Journal published an interesting article in which he explains that there have been secret agreements between the companies to avoid direct confrontation on this point.
But now Apple has changed its rules (for some unknown reason, as rule number one of Fight Clubpardon the App Store it’s simple and clear), specifying that you have to pay the commission on the “boost” sales for posts in a social media app“.
This looks like a direct attack just a Half because it happens in other apps like Twitter or TikTok regularly paying this kind of commission.
We also remember that Mark Zuckerberg’s company is already quite nervous about having lost several billion due to the new tracking policies introduced in iOS 15 (which at the same time allowed Apple to increase advertising revenues).
There Meta’s answer was not long in coming: “Apple continues to evolve its policies to grow its business while reducing the space of others in the digital economy.” Appropriately, the society quotes a sentence from the head of the App Store Phil Schiller during the trial with Epic: “Apple previously claimed it never took a share of developers’ ad revenue and has now apparently changed its mind“.
But why then Twitter And TikTok have they always paid the commission? And why Apple has changed the lines guide? Be that as it may, the question according to Meta mainly concerns the small advertisers which will see their ad costs soar.
Contacted about it, you can already imagine the response from Apple: “The sale of goods ei digital services within an app must use thein-app purchase“.
Spotify doesn’t fit: selling audiobooks under these conditions is impossible
And let’s move on to the second front against Apple, the one with Spotify. In September, the well-known service music streaming started selling (for now only in the US) audiobooks through its app.
There Spotify’s proposal it’s simple: the user opens the app, chooses the audiobook, buys it, and listens to it.
We have already mentioned rule number one ofApp Store. You understand where we are headed. To sell audiobooks within the app, Spotify has to pay a 30% commission (for each audiobook) to Apple.
The alternative? The user chooses an audiobook who wishes to hear (attention, without being able to see the price), then Spotify sends a link by email to buy it via the Web. At that point, it will find out the price, which it will not be able to compare with other products.
The system isn’t much enticing and the company has tried different proposals, constantly rejected by Apple. According to Spotify, the Cupertino house has constantly changed its mind, complicating the rules each time, to counteract its ambitions.
Stove, the streaming platform published a long post that denounces the situation.
According to Spotify, in the absence of government intervention, Apple has shown several times that it does not regulate itself and has no real incentive to change.
But why not use the in-app payment method? Why do the audiobooks would cost 30% more and wouldn’t be competitive with those sold directly by Apple with its Books platform? Apple’s response was not long in coming.
“The Spotify app was rejected for failing to follow guidelines for including explicit in-app communications to direct users outside of the app to make digital purchases“.
In short, the first rule is always the same, and it is very simple. And also the second, in case you have forgotten the first one. Pay 30% commission to Apple.
Abram left his e-business studies to devote himself to his entrepreneurial projects. In 2017, he created the company Inbound Media and wrote articles about high-tech products for his Chromebookeur site. In 2019, Chromebookeur was renamed Macbound and became a general purchasing advice site. Today, Abram manages the development and growth of Macbound, surrounded by a young and talented team.