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Apple will finally allow some apps to collect payments outside of the App Store

Don’t get to excited, the change is very limited.

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Image: KnowTechie

After an investigation from Japan’s Fair Trade Commission, Apple is loosening its grip (slightly) on some apps, and will allow developers to point to an external website for signups and payments. This effectively removes the cut the iPhone maker receives.

Announced this week, what this means is that some apps, specifically reader apps, will be able to skip Apple’s 30% cut of purchases made through the App Store. Reader apps are basically apps that allow you to consume digital content like magazines and music that you may have purchased elsewhere.

Essentially, this is more focused on account management and lets these apps offer users a way to skip signing up through Apple and through an Apple payment method. It will not affect anything like mobile games, but will affect services like Netflix and Spotify.

In the post, Apple notes:

Before the change goes into effect in early 2022, Apple will update its guidelines and review process to make sure users of reader apps continue to have a safe experience on the App Store.

This probably isn’t the last change coming to the App Store in the months and years ahead. There is still the ongoing lawsuit with Epic Games, which looks to completely change how the App Store locks users into paying through Apple.

In addition, a new Korean law is looking to make both Apple and Google allow payment options that skip the app stores, which would also mean Apple and Google do not receive a cut of payments.

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