Social media apps must pay App Store 30% for boosts

Posted:
in iOS
Apple's revised App Store guidelines are now explicit that any social media app that allows paid boosts to social media posts are subject to the 30% in-app purchase fee.




Alongside new rules for NFTs and cryptocurrency, Apple has added or altered many App Store stipulations. Notably, it is introducing this 30% IAP levy on social media boosts, but it also sets out to be clear which apps it does and does not applies to.

"Digital purchases for content that is experienced or consumed in an app," it says in the new updates, " including buying advertisements to display in the same app (such as sales of 'boosts' for posts in a social media app) must use in-app purchase."

This is where the buyer is an individual, or perhaps a small business, that is buying a boost for a particular post within a social media app. Apple does not apply this fee where the app is entirely about advertising.

"Apps for the sole purpose of allowing advertisers (persons or companies that advertise a product, service, or event) to purchase and manage advertising campaigns across media types (television, outdoor, websites, apps, etc.) do not need to use in-app purchase," says Apple.

"These apps are intended for campaign management purposes and do not display the advertisements themselves," it continues.

Apple's full App Store guidelines documentation for developers is available online.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    I’m glad, good!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 17
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 2,869member
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    muthuk_vanalingamCheeseFreezebyronl
  • Reply 3 of 17
    but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Agreed. It would be fascinating to see a flow chart of Apple’s internal teams involved in the final set of policies, because it seems utterly tone deaf for the times and likely to tear the AppStore apart. I can’t believe there’s not enough internal leadership to manage strategy better. Poking a bee hive with a stick because you’re not paying attention. 
    DAalsethbyronl
  • Reply 4 of 17
    omasouomasou Posts: 607member
    DAalseth said:
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Agreed. It would be fascinating to see a flow chart of Apple’s internal teams involved in the final set of policies, because it seems utterly tone deaf for the times and likely to tear the AppStore apart. I can’t believe there’s not enough internal leadership to manage strategy better. Poking a bee hive with a stick because you’re not paying attention. 

    The app is circumventing Apple's advertisement platform. Would be similar to complaining for having to pay Google for displaying ads next to search results.

    Tumblr? That platform still exists?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 17
    Alex_VAlex_V Posts: 225member
    DAalseth said:
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Apple’s App Store is like a shopping mall. If you want to set up shop in their mall, you’ve got to pay rent. Their rent is 30% of your sales (or 15% if your sales are less than x dollars per annum). If your shop is doing business in their mall, it means that you’re contractually subject to their conditions. 
    omasouwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 17
    Alex_V said:
    DAalseth said:
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Apple’s App Store is like a shopping mall. If you want to set up shop in their mall, you’ve got to pay rent. Their rent is 30% of your sales (or 15% if your sales are less than x dollars per annum). If your shop is doing business in their mall, it means that you’re contractually subject to their conditions. 
    And how many shopping malls exist on the platform exactly?
    Would you like to rent from the only two landlords in the world (Mr. Google, Mr. Apple)? 
    byronl
  • Reply 7 of 17
    omasouomasou Posts: 607member
    Alex_V said:
    DAalseth said:
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Apple’s App Store is like a shopping mall. If you want to set up shop in their mall, you’ve got to pay rent. Their rent is 30% of your sales (or 15% if your sales are less than x dollars per annum). If your shop is doing business in their mall, it means that you’re contractually subject to their conditions. 
    And how many shopping malls exist on the platform exactly?
    Would you like to rent from the only two landlords in the world (Mr. Google, Mr. Apple)? 
    Physical malls aren't much different? https://www.simon.com/mall

    Simon Property Group, Inc. is an American real estate investment trust that invests in shopping malls, outlet centers, and community/lifestyle centers. It is the largest owner of shopping malls in the United States and is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.
  • Reply 8 of 17
    JinTechJinTech Posts: 1,044member
    This is probably giving Zuckerburg a hernia! 
  • Reply 9 of 17
    Alex_V said:
    Apple’s App Store is like a shopping mall. If you want to set up shop in their mall, you’ve got to pay rent. Their rent is 30% of your sales (or 15% if your sales are less than x dollars per annum). If your shop is doing business in their mall, it means that you’re contractually subject to their conditions. 
    Disagree. This is more like Apple is the shopping mall, but instead of charging rent they want a slice of revenue, so they get their 30% when you buy your shirt. But now with this new bit, you need to pay them 30% of the laundromat price every time you wash your shirt too. The problem is the shirt manufacturer and the laundromat are the same company, so they’re giving away the shirt for free in Apple’s mall and on Apple’s dime. But that still gives Apple little merit on which to send ruffians to the laundromat to take 30% out of the coin boxes without criminal charges. Apple needs some mechanism to recognize and recoup the value of running the shopping mall - like rent instead of revenue - in the midst of this backwards business model. It can’t involve robbing the transactionally disconnected laundromat business. There’s just no way this holds up over time. 
  • Reply 10 of 17
    You know this has made me think a bit more about Apple's position here, which sometimes seems tenuous, but I guess the real debate here to take the analogy to an extreme is that Apple believes they are fundamental to the use of the laundromat, and thereby entitled to a share of the revenue.  What I can't tell you is whether it is A or B - does Apple A) think that without the shirt purchased through their shopping mall, there would be no reason to use a laundromat, so the laundromat owes them 30%, OR B) think that the functionality of the laundromat itself (even though it is built with different parts and resources) operates through the use of their resources because you wore your shoes and other clothes that you got from their shopping mall to the laundromat?  You got this app for free (shirt) but now you're going to pay to boost or blaze this post on the app's ecosystem that operates primarily outside the app (washing your laundry at the laundromat) but you're wearing your shopping mall clothes (using the app OR just having the app installed?) while your washing, so you owe us for getting these clothes through our shopping mall where the value of getting these clothes wasn't captured (was free, low cost, whatever).

    I've always assumed this was a ludicrous position because it was A above.  But I think Apple is of the opinion that it is B above.  Still seems unlikely to hold water, but a little more nuanced and debatable.
  • Reply 11 of 17
    Alex_VAlex_V Posts: 225member
    Disagree. This is more like Apple is the shopping mall, but instead of charging rent they want a slice of revenue, so they get their 30% when you buy your shirt. But now with this new bit, you need to pay them 30% of the laundromat price every time you wash your shirt too. The problem is the shirt manufacturer and the laundromat are the same company, so they’re giving away the shirt for free in Apple’s mall and on Apple’s dime. But that still gives Apple little merit on which to send ruffians to the laundromat to take 30% out of the coin boxes without criminal charges. Apple needs some mechanism to recognize and recoup the value of running the shopping mall - like rent instead of revenue - in the midst of this backwards business model. It can’t involve robbing the transactionally disconnected laundromat business. There’s just no way this holds up over time. 
    If the laundromat is located inside Apple’s mall, Apple gets 30%. It’s so easy! And the laundromat is free to relocate if the believe they can get a better deal elsewhere. 
  • Reply 12 of 17
    Alex_VAlex_V Posts: 225member
    You got this app for free (shirt) but now you're going to pay to boost or blaze this post on the app's ecosystem that operates primarily outside the app (washing your laundry at the laundromat) but you're wearing your shopping mall clothes (using the app OR just having the app installed?) while your washing, so you owe us for getting these clothes through our shopping mall where the value of getting these clothes wasn't captured (was free, low cost, whatever).
    That is their business model. That’s how they make money, and they do it in Apple’s mall. So Apple takes a cut. It doesn’t matter that the App itself is free. 

    Now that we are resorting to far-fetched analogies… That would be like a funeral service located in Apple’s mall arguing that they shouldn’t pay rent because the bodies are buried elsewhere. 
  • Reply 13 of 17
    omasouomasou Posts: 607member
    No one is stopping these "app" from being web apps that run in the browser and avoid all the headaches.

    Oh, wait they want to use the Apple APIs to sniff all my phone meta data, location, etc.

    You want to play. You need to pay. Otherwise shutup and create your own platform or move to a different device. 70% of something is much better than 100% of NOTHING.
    Alex_V
  • Reply 14 of 17
    LeoMCLeoMC Posts: 102member
    Make me understand one thing: why would you - the regular users - care that a social network is paying Apple a % of the sales it makes through AS and because of Apple's clients?!
    omasouAlex_V
  • Reply 15 of 17
    omasou said:
    Alex_V said:
    DAalseth said:
    I have always been bothered by Apple demanding a cut of sales not through the AppStore. Apple wants 30% of the price of an App, fine. But demanding a third of anything bought or sold with that App when it has nothing to do with Apple or Apple’s store just feels wrong. So if somebody wants to Blaze a post on Tumblr, and Apple wants a cut because a year before they downloaded the Tumblr App? No that’s just wrong, wrong and abusive. It may make more money for Apple in the short run, but it’s that kind of crap that’s fuelling the push to call Apple a monopoly and force them to allow people to load Apps from outside the AppStore. Then everyone loses.
    Apple’s App Store is like a shopping mall. If you want to set up shop in their mall, you’ve got to pay rent. Their rent is 30% of your sales (or 15% if your sales are less than x dollars per annum). If your shop is doing business in their mall, it means that you’re contractually subject to their conditions. 
    And how many shopping malls exist on the platform exactly?
    Would you like to rent from the only two landlords in the world (Mr. Google, Mr. Apple)? 
    Physical malls aren't much different? https://www.simon.com/mall

    Simon Property Group, Inc. is an American real estate investment trust that invests in shopping malls, outlet centers, and community/lifestyle centers. It is the largest owner of shopping malls in the United States and is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.
    Hundreds of shopping mall owners exist throughout the world with 25+ already in the USA.   
    They are able to grow independently - nobody is not allowing them to exist.

    I was using the landlord analogy (or for that matter, real estate agency) though, because it better outlines the restrictive and world wide nature of Apple and Google’s duopoly across the world.
  • Reply 16 of 17
    LeoMC said:
    Make me understand one thing: why would you - the regular users - care that a social network is paying Apple a % of the sales it makes through AS and because of Apple's clients?!
    Because in the end we don’t want the little guys to be choked by the really really big guys with big pockets, because it hurts competition and the concept of a free market.

    This is the irony of it all: many people on this platform defend Apple for their position (“they came up with the platform, why shouldn’t they be able to decide the rules?”) which is a free market thought. However, this is not limitless. 
    Once a a player becomes too big due to a free market allowing them to grow, they BECOME the market, hurting the very thing that made them the way they are.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 17 of 17
    LeoMCLeoMC Posts: 102member
    LeoMC said:
    Make me understand one thing: why would you - the regular users - care that a social network is paying Apple a % of the sales it makes through AS and because of Apple's clients?!
    Because in the end we don’t want the little guys to be choked by the really really big guys with big pockets, because it hurts competition and the concept of a free market.

    This is the irony of it all: many people on this platform defend Apple for their position (“they came up with the platform, why shouldn’t they be able to decide the rules?”) which is a free market thought. However, this is not limitless. 
    Once a a player becomes too big due to a free market allowing them to grow, they BECOME the market, hurting the very thing that made them the way they are.
    And you think Meta, Twitter (soon to be owned by the richest man in the world) or YouTube are "little guys"?
    Alex_V
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