Netflix will no longer accept iTunes as a method of payment for new subscribers, as per an announcement by the streaming platform. It means those who want to use Netflix on their iOS devices will not be able to sign up through the iOS app. To make a payment, the users will have to sign up with a web browser.
In a statement released on Friday, Netflix announced the change. The company had started testing it a few months ago, but the change was limited to only select markets. In November, it rolled out the plan worldwide. It didn’t reveal why it stopped supporting iTunes as the payment method.
According to experts, Netflix’s move to ditch iTunes for billing can be a part of the company’s plan to get more subscribers through the web browser and earn more profits for itself. Earlier, it had to pay a share to Apple for every new subscription.
The change was first reported by VentureBeat. Soon after that, Netflix released a short statement where it confirmed the change. “We no longer support iTunes as a method of payment for new members”, reads the statement.
Why Netflix Killed In-App Subscriptions On Apple Devices?
As per sources, Netflix was giving a big part of its in-app subscriptions on iOS to Apple. Initially, the world’s leading subscription service was sharing a massive 30% cut with Apple. Later, it was settled on 15%, leaving 85% revenue to Netflix. However, the company finds Apple taking too much.
Netflix is not the first to go against the higher cut by Apple. In the last less than two years, several companies have raised their voice against the tech giant. Music streaming platform Spotify, which is also the leading subscription music app, has already ditched Apple’s in-app billing for a similar reason. It argued that Apple was taking the wrong advantage of its App Store policies.
There are many like Spotify that believe Apple should not claim revenue for services it doesn’t produce. Netflix is the latest in the group against Apple.
Before Apple, Google has also faced similar consequences when Netflix stopped Google Play from offering in-app subscriptions.
What iOS Device Users Can Do now?
After the change, Apple device users have to begin subscription through Safari. Although current Netflix subscribers will be allowed to make a payment through the same old way for some time, those who are returning to re-activate their accounts have to come via the web browser.
An in-app subscription is an easy and convenient way of billing as it makes use of info a user has already entered in the device. Although the change by Netflix won’t affect the company’s subscription numbers, it may make billing a complex process for Apple device owners for some time.