Developers can now tell their customers the other payment options they can take.
Communicate with Customers
In August, Apple settled a class-action lawsuit and agreed to let app developers communicate with their own customers. The company considered App Store as the safest place for users to obtain apps and a business opportunity for developers to thrive and grow.
Because of the settlement, Apple has updated its App Store policies. The changes are just minor but it’s an important step to a fairer future for developers. The updates support new features in upcoming iOS releases. They protect customers and allow the company to review the app smoothly.
One of the changes is related to the lawsuit settlement. That is, the company removed a clause that doesn’t allow developers from using details of their own customers to contact them about alternative payment methods outside Apple.
In that case, when a person signs up for an account in the app, developers can send that user an email about other ways to purchase.
However, the change is only applied to developers based in the US. Furthermore, Apple doesn’t allow developers to contact users about other payment alternatives in their own apps.
Apple is also allowing developers to request customer information, such as name and email. However, the request is optional. Users have the option not to divulge their contact information.
The third change is not related to the settlement. Rather, it details how developers can utilize in-app events. It’s a new App Store feature that’s going to be introduced next week. This new feature will be included in the iOS 15.1 update. The company advises its developers to make sure that the metadata they entered in the App Store is correct. It should also be related to the event.
If users would choose to pay outside Apple or the app, the company can’t get a commission.
In recent months, regulators are scrutinizing Apple’s rules about prohibiting developers to contact their customers. Lawmakers around the world are trying to determine whether or not Apple is acting as a monopolizer as it limits developers from reaching out to their customers.
Apple is adjusting its App Store rules because of different settlements in certain markets. In South Korea, the country passed new laws that prohibit Apple and Google from requiring developers to use their respective payment systems.
In the US, Apple is still fighting against Epic Games in a lawsuit. The case is still under appeal. The original ruling would require Apple to let developers point their own sites in their apps where users could pay directly for subscriptions. As a result, developers can bypass the company’s payment systems.
Apple and Google are changing their commission structures. The goal is to lower their commission from developers’ revenues in various ways. This week, Google lowered its fees to 15% from the original 30%. The commissions for certain apps have also been lowered to as much as 10%.
The changes for App Store are now live starting today.