Apple has told App Store developers that they will now be able to automatically pass on subscription price increases to consumers.
Previously, when a subscription price was increased, subscribers had to opt-in by tapping the “Accept new price” icon before the price increase was applied, otherwise the subscription would not renew at the next billing period.
The change is sure to alarm some App Store customers. However, Apple has reassured users that the new change to its payment system will only work under certain specific conditions and with notice.
App Store Subscriptions
Apple says the specific terms of this change to its merchant services are that the price increase occur no more than once a year, no more than $5, and 50% of the subscription price, or $50 and 50% for an annual subscription price, and is permitted by local law.
Users will be notified in advance of the increase in these situations via email, push notification or in-app message.
Apple says the current system has resulted in some services being unintentionally terminated for users, meaning they have to take steps to resubscribe in the app.
This isn’t the first App Store update from the consumer tech giant that is unlikely to be welcomed with open arms.
For example, the company recently announced that developers of smartphone apps that have not been updated in the past three years will receive an email telling them that their app has been flagged for removal from the App Store.
This decision has caused the ire of many developers, who claim that many applications can exist in a complete form and do not require repeated updates.