Apple has just announced some big updates to the App Store, including a significant change to its developer revenue split.
Effective immediately, Apple’s usual 30% cut of revenue for subscription apps will halve if subscribers stay with the app for over a year.
This could mean a substantial increase in revenue for existing and new apps, whose 70% cut could increase to 85%, depending on their subscribers.
For example, if someone has been a subscriber to a dating app for over a year, the developers of that app will get 85% of the revenue, rather than the previous 70%.
This is apparently to recognise that if people stay beyond a year, “the developer is doing most of the work”, Apple’s Phil Schiller said.
And this will start happening on Monday – apps that have subscribers who are over a year old will immediately start splitting revenue 85/15 with Apple.
Other revisions to the App Store include a change in the policy around who can offer a subscription service for apps, changes to the ads seen in the App Store, and a modification of the process used to review apps.
The new policy regarding subscription fees lets any app introduce fees and have full control on the amount they charge – something that gaming apps, for example, previously couldn’t do.
If the fee is changed, the subscriber will have the opportunity to decline the new amount and they will be taken off the subscription list.
This new freedom could obviously see an uptick in the number of apps that choose to implement a subscription revenue model.
The App Store will also be changing the layout of its searches, adding a relevant advertisement at the top of each search, like the Google Play Store.
The ads are said to be primarily focused on other apps available on the App Store and will be linked to the search the user typed in.
Finally, Apple are refining their review process on apps, allowing them to publish and make apps available to users much quicker – something developers have noticed over recent months.
These changes have been announced before Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference, where more exciting updates are expected.
The important updates come after reports earlier this year that the tech giant had a “secret” team of over 100 employees looking at ways it could adapt the online application store, led by the App Store’s new leader, Phil Schiller.