- Apple’s updated App Store rules give it 30% of in-app purchases for social media posting “boosts.”
- The rule essentially allows Apple to tax certain ads in apps like Facebook and Instagram.
- A spokesperson for Meta told Insider that Apple’s move undermines other companies and helps itself.
Meta isn’t happy with Apple’s latest update to its App Store guidelines for in-app purchases.
Updated rule requires iOS app developers to use Apple’s in-app purchases system for posting “boosts” – ads that appear in the same app they’re purchased on – in apps of social media. This means Apple gets 30% of in-app purchases in Meta-owned apps like Facebook or Instagram when people use the app to pay to boost their posts and profiles to a wider audience.
“Apple continues to evolve its policies to grow its own business while undermining others in the digital economy,” a spokesperson for Meta told Insider in a statement. “Apple previously said it does not take part in ad revenue from developers and has apparently changed its mind. We remain committed to providing easy ways for small businesses to serve ads and grow their business on our apps.”
During Epic’s lawsuit against Apple last May, Phil Schiller, chief executive of the App Store, said Apple never cut the iOS developer’s advertising revenue.
An Apple spokesperson told Insider that “for many years, App Store guidelines “have made it clear that the sale of digital goods and services within an app must use in-app purchase. “.
Boosting is a digital service, the spokesperson said, so it requires an in-app purchase.
“It’s always been the case and there are plenty of examples of apps doing it successfully,” the spokesperson said.
Twitter and TikTok are other apps that use in-app purchase for boosts.
Alex Heath of The Verge reported earlier this week that, based on his conversations with Meta employees, the App Store update shouldn’t have too big an impact on Meta’s revenue, but ” there are concerns about the precedent and that Apple will eventually require the same rule for Meta’s standalone ad management application.”
Eric Seufert, an advertising industry analyst, told Heath that people who buy boosts in their social media apps will be more affected by updated App Store policies, as they will have to pay more for the same range as before.
During Meta’s winning call on Wednesday, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged some of Apple’s recent changes, including its latest App Store policy language regarding boosted posts, saying it’s were “obviously big risks” that Meta “considers problems”.
Zuckerberg also spoke about competition and “advertising challenges,” which he said “particularly come from Apple.”
Meta saw a 4% decline in revenue in the third quarter of this year, continuing a string of disappointing quarterly results. On an analyst call, he told investors the company plans to continue spending even more next year, despite losing money as Zuckerberg continues his quest to build the metaverse.
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