Apple pilot tests feature that allows developers to automatically charge users for subscription price increases

Apple Examination Pilots New Feature In App Shop that Auto Enrolls Current App Subscribers

How Apple handles iOS subscriptions in the app store may have some new changes coming soon. Recently, developers have begun to notice that sure applications are informing users of a price hike in their subscriptions, and then automobile enrolling them in a new subscription anyway. Correct now, it is the Disney+ app that is changing prices. A spokesperson for Apple is claiming this is a new featuring undergoing a test pilot in the app store to permit developers to automatically charge app subscribers when at that place’s a cost change.

Surprising users with new subscriptions costs is typically not how the App Store operates. In most situations, a customer has the option to agree or disagree to the new toll. If they do not concord to the new price, the app directs users to the subscriptions management page in gild to opt out of the service. For sure apps, this no longer seems to be the case.

An App Shop That Auto Enrolls Subscribers

A developer by the name of Max Seelemann claims to take received a notification about a price increase for his subscription to Disney+. Rather than receiving the option to opt-out, the notification just provided a large “OK” button. Reportedly there is fine print that shows how to unsubscribe from a service.

Currently, there is at present a debate every bit to whether Disney+ is using a and so-called “dark design” for its subscription service. In essence, a dark pattern is a user interface crafted to fox users into doing things, such equally signing up for services they practice not desire or need.

Seeleman believes that what Disney+ is doing is essentially a night pattern, as he also received an email informing him of the price increment. Instead of giving Seeleman an option, he was just accepted in at the college rate. Subsequently releasing this information to Twitter, several other users mentioned that they too were required to opt out of services.

The price of Disney+ has changed over the past year, with the price rise by $1 in March 2021. Currently, Disney+ is $seven.99 per month, or an annual subscription is $79.99.

While a $one increase isn’t the virtually notable modify, users are growing concerned that developers may use this new characteristic to raise prices to even higher amounts without users direct agreeing to the charges. When you lot agree to pay a certain price for a service, yous typically want to keep paying that price.

Currently, Apple tree’s official developer documentation states that this sort of practice goes against the rules for subscription services. Apple’due south official documentation explains that customers must manually concur to new prices. If users do not hold to a new price through a price consent sheet, the subscription automatically cancels.

Testing the Subscription

An iOS developer by the proper noun of David Barnard decided to examination this change for himself. Barnard wanted to know if this knew “automatic opt in” arrangement was available to all developers. Withal, tests indicate that when prices rise, users are still presented with a screen asking them to concord to the new price. The developer did not have the ability to automatically opt users into the new price.

It would seem Disney+ has a special agreement with Apple tree to operate differently than other app based subscription services. When a reporter for TechCrunch reached out to an Apple spokesperson, the representative did non deny the claim. According to the Apple representative, this is part of a pilot test. Allegedly more details are coming in the following weeks.

This is an odd time for Apple, equally Apple is currently under fire for its commission structure. The company has been reported to reduce commissions for smaller developers, as well as commissions for news apps that participate in Apple News.

Until Apple tree officially announces something, app subscribers will take to expect and see.


Originally posted 2022-04-07 07:33:38.