Apple to let developers promote purchases outside the app store

Developers can send out emails saying purchases can be made on their websites

Apple will let app developers using its store contact consumers and tell them they can make purchases outside the store and app itself, in a large policy u-turn.

As reported by GamesIndustry.biz, this means that developers using the iOS app store can circumvent the commission that Apple takes on all purchases. Developers will be able to email mobile players telling them that they can make purchases directly through the developers website at a reduced cost, as long as players opt-in for the emails.

This decision is separate from the Epic vs Apple trial, which will see a result at some point this year. This particular concession comes as part of a lawsuit filed in 2019, where Apple will also open up a $100million (£73million) small business fund.

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Pokemon Go
Pokémon Go. Credit: Niantic

Developers that have earned $1million (£730,000) or less through the US store and all its apps in each calendar year between June 4 2015 and April 26 2021 will be eligible for the fund.

The fund is currently only available to US developers, but Apple says it is considering opening similar funds elsewhere for other developers.

This wasn’t the only concession made in the lawsuit, as the company is going to publish “meaningful statistics about the app review process” as well. Details will include the number of account deactivations, data pertaining to search queries, and the number of apps rejected.

Content will also be added to the app review website to allow developers a better understanding of the app rejection appeal process, alongside allowing them to appeal the rejection of an app over what is deemed “unfair treatment”.

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In other news, an recently published EA patent would use the CAPTCHA system to detect bots in games and reward actual players for successfully completing the puzzles, which could range from hitting goal targets or making sure an image has the right orientation.

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