Apple seems to be delivering on its promise to offer a less restrictive app store for developers and users. Now some apps may include external links in their respective iOS applications. In this way, users who wish to do so can register and choose an alternative payment method to that of the App Store.
The measure, announced in September 2021 and which the company has assured to apply in 2022 in order to end the investigation of the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC, for its acronym in English), applies to all applications. categorized as “content view apps”.
Apple specifies that a “reading” or “content viewing” application is an application that offers content such as series, films, books, magazines or music, through a previous purchase or through a monthly subscription. Platforms like Netflix, HBO Max, Spotify, Hulu and other streaming services are therefore considered as playback apps.
Some of these platforms, like Netflix, never offered a recording system in their iOS app. Until now, if a new user wanted to register for the service, they had to do so externally. That is, by accessing the browser, entering Netflix.com and filling in your data and banking information. I couldn’t do it from the app itself. Once registered, you had to enter the login data in the application. With this new measure, however, the process is much simpler. In these cases, moreover, the platforms do not have to share this 30% commission that Apple demands from those who use the App Store payment platform.
Services like Netflix can therefore now include a link to this external page from the application itself, which will make it much easier for the user to registerWhere. In fact, there will be no need to exit the app, as iOS allows you to open a browser window within the app itself.
Apple will have to indicate which applications can or cannot use this option
Apple, on the other hand, has confirmed that would strengthen the review process to prevent ineligible app developers from also adding a registration link to an external site.
The company must also offer a annual transparency report on the aforementioned review process. In this way, the JFTC will be able to know if an application considered “read” has been rejected and, therefore, if the company has violated the conditions. At the same time, Apple was also forced to offer protection measures for payments made outside the App Store.