Apple announces App Store changes in wake of Epic Games ruling

Developers can now target their users with alternative purchasing methods other an in-app purchases.

What you need to know

  • Apple has announced some big changes to its App Store.
  • Developers can now target users, telling them about other ways to pay for goods.
  • It comes following the Epic Games ruling and antitrust criticism regarding its App Store.

Apple announced on Friday that developers will be allowed to target users with other ways to pay for digital goods and services in their apps using emails and more, in the wake of the Epic Games ruling and antitrust criticism of its App Store.

Apple told developers:

The App Store is a safe and trusted place for customers to discover and download apps, and a great opportunity for developers. The following updates to the App Store Review Guidelines support new features in upcoming OS releases, better protect customers, and help your apps go through the review process as smoothly as possible.

Apple has added new guidance regarding in-app events:

To feature your event on the App Store, it must fall within an event type provided in App Store Connect. All event metadata must be accurate and pertain to the event itself, rather than the app more generally. Events must happen at the times and dates you select in App Store Connect, including across multiple storefronts. You may monetize your event so long as you follow the rules set forth in Section 3 on Business. And your event deep link must direct users to the proper destination within your app. Read In-App Events for detailed guidance on acceptable event metadata and event deep links.”

The biggest change arguably comes regarding contacting users about payment methods. Apple has removed a clause that said developers “cannot use information obtained within the app to target individual users outside of the app to use purchasing methods other than in-app purchase (such as sending an individual user an email about other purchasing methods after that individual signs up for an account within the app).”

Finally, Apple says that Apps may request basic contact information from the users as long as the request is optional, and so long features and services aren’t conditional on providing the information.

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