Tuesday, April 10, 2018

App Store Subscriptions And You

Daniel Kennett (tweet):

What makes this more difficult is that right now, App Store subscriptions for “normal” apps (i.e., those that aren’t content services like magazines or Netflix) are reasonably new, and Apple appears to be finessing the rules over time. This can cause a frustrating situation as you try to do your best but end up getting repeated rejections due to your app not meeting the rules.

At the time of writing, I’ve been shipping an app that uses subscriptions for eight months, and have had multiple subscription-related rejections happen between my first release and now due to changing rules and changing enforcement of existing rules. The information in this post is a combination of my experience, as well as conversations with App Review both via email and phone. Hopefully the additional context provided by speaking to a human being from App Review on the phone will be as helpful to you as it was for me.

2 Comments RSS · Twitter

I went through all of this madness over the past two weeks as well. Fun times. Some of the policies are strange to me. For example, why does a subscription have to have a privacy policy, but a one-time purchase doesn't? And why does the app description need to have an unclickable plain text link to the privacy policy even though the app page itself has a dedicated actual clickable link to it? The distinction between what can be an auto-renewing subscription vs a non-renewing subscription is arbitrary; the renewing nature of any subscription should be up to the user to begin with. Add onto those, the pretty terrible user experience of clicking "Buy" and then waiting an indeterminate amount of time between a series of less-than-beautiful system-wide modal dialogs to pop up. Nevermind the madness of figuring out the mechanical processes of iTunesConnect. The whole system could use a heck of a lot of polishing.

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