Companies that already offer iPhone and iPad apps for services that offer subscriptions have until June 30, 2011, to add in-app subscription support. The requirement is part of a new policy Apple recently imposed that requires companies that let customers buy or subscribe to content through a Web site to be able to do the same from within iOS apps.
“For existing apps already in the App Store, we are providing a grace period to bring your app into compliance with this guideline,” Apple told publishers in a memo, according to AllThingsD. “To ensure your app remains on the App Store, please submit an update that uses the In App Purchase API for purchasing content, by June 30, 2011.”
iOS subscription deadline: June 30
Apple’s in-app subscription feature was first shown off during News Corp’s media event introducing its The Daily iPad news app in early February. On February 15, Apple opened up the feature to all iOS app developers.
“All we require is that, if a publisher is making a subscription offer outside of the app, the same (or better) offer be made inside the app, so that customers can easily subscribe with one-click right in the app,” Apple CEO Steve Jobs said.
Apple will take a 30 percent cut of in-app subscription sales, just as it already does with other in-app purchases. Subscription purchases that happen outside of iOS apps won’t net any money for Apple.
While the new policy will make it easier for consumers to purchase content, publishers most likely won’t be pleased with the prospect of sharing some of their sales with Apple. Those companies have, however, about four months to decide whether or not they want to continue offering their apps to iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users.