Will Netflix, others be affected by Apple’s subscription rules?

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You know all the buzz regarding Apple’s app subscription policies? Well, to put it bluntly, it seriously freaked out some developers.

Apple let its dev community know that it would start enforcing its rule that apps that link to external websites for content purchases also have to sell the same content inside the app. (How else would Apple get its 30% cut?) Suddenly, there were questions about whether offerings like Netflix and DropBox – whose subscription signups are on their sites – would be subject to these rules as well. And you know what? They weren’t the only ones a little concerned. A lot of end users were afraid that some of their favorite services would be yanked.

If you were one of the concerned, it looks like you can rest easy. A developer of a SaaS (or “Software as a Service”) app says he emailed Steve Jobs about it, and got a response.


Hello Steve,

As a full time iOS developer, I am concerned (and confused) withe the new App Store guideline regarding “Apps offering subscriptions” (section 11.12).

Most of the iOS apps I have developed, as a contractor for other businesses, have been free apps that had login screens to allow the user access to some amount of private data. and/or service. These businesses have all been well established companies that sell some kind of service to their customers (Software As a Service companies) and the iOS app was merely another “portal” for their users to access their data/services (in many times, in a limited i.e. “mobile” fashion)…. for example; SalesForce. I am concerned that most of these businesses will choose to not develop an iOS app for their customers if the IAP & subscription policy was in place.

Would these type’s of free apps be still be allowed in the App Store or will they now be expected to use IAP?



According to the dev, this is how Jobs responded:

We created subscriptions for publishing apps, not SaaS apps.

Sent from my iPhone


Yup, that sounds like vintage Stevey – short, blunt and completely lacking any flourish. Well, if it’s for real, at least SaaS apps are safe. Apps like Amazon Kindle? Well, maybe not so much.

Via: BoyGenius Report


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