Pay attention to renewal notices for App Store subscriptions because these are the only notification you’ll receive that the cost is going up. Developers are now allowed to increase iPhone app subscription prices without users having to opt in.
There are limits on how much the fees can go up, though.
A new Apple News Partner Program allows subscription news publications to provide their content to the Apple News app while paying a lower than usual share of the revenue coming from customers. Companies that choose to participate will have to give Apple 15% of subscription fees in the first year — half the usual amount.
This move is apparently in response to complaints from big publications about Apple’s cut.
Apple has reportedly began cracking down on apps that feature subscriptions Apple considers to be unreasonable, claims 9to5Mac.
The report cites a rejection email sent to one developer saying that the price of in-app purchases do not “do not reflect the value of the features and content” on offer. It also calls it a “rip-off to customers.”
Developers of iPhone applications that include in-app purchases and subscriptions can now make them part of Family Sharing. This allows a family to share an item or subscription — at the developer’s discretion.
This is already a feature of Apple’s own services. A family can share a subscription to Apple Arcade or Apple TV+, for example. With this change for third-party apps, the Family Sharing option should become more widely available.
Recurring subscriptions have changed how we pay for digital content. And, while each service might only demand a couple of our hard-earned bucks at a time, the costs can quickly add up.
According to a report citing data from mobile measurement firm Adjust, the average person in the U.S. spends $20.78 a month on app subscriptions. And, given that this just an average, many spend a whole lot more than that.
It will soon be possible for developers to give out codes to customers that bring discounts on subscription fees for software or services in the Apple App Store. The goal is to help app creators “acquire, retain, and win back subscribers” with these one-time use codes that people can then easily redeem, according to Apple.
A cyber-security firm in the United Kingdom has identified 32 iOS apps that it dubs “fleeceware” for subscriptions and in-app fees that amount to a form of online fraud.
More than 3.5 million iOS users installed the apps, most of which were image editors, QR and barcode scanners, horoscope and fortune-telling apps and face filters for selfies. Two astrology apps making the list are among the first 20 in top-grossing iPhone apps in the UK.