Apple last week implemented price increases for App Store content throughout the European Union and in several other countries, rebalancing the company's pricing as exchange rates have shifted and new taxes have gone into effect in some countries.
One side effect of that change, however, is that auto-renewing subscriptions for app content have been automatically turned off for any pricing tiers that saw increases due to Apple's changes. The issue was noticed by a MacRumors reader and also highlighted by Popular Science UK editor Tom Royal today.
Users have so far apparently not been notified that auto-renewals have been turned off following the price increases, although in the examples we've seen the renewal dates are still several weeks into the future.
It is understandable that Apple may want or need to receive consent from customers before automatically raising recurring subscription fees, but so far neither publishers nor users have been notified of this issue and they are only discovering it for themselves when digging into the subscription settings for their apps.
Apple was proactive about notifying app developers of impending price increases roughly a day and a half of time, but additional information on the effect those changes are having on recurring subscriptions was not included. As a result, some users may suddenly find themselves losing access to their content while publishers may lose out from users who simply elect not to follow up on the issue and resubscribe, regardless of whether the new rates themselves would be a determining factor.
Users in affected countries should check their settings for any recurring in-app subscriptions and ensure that they turn auto-renew back on should they wish to continue receiving their content.
Top Rated Comments
I suspect quite a lot of people won't bother renewing. But surely the publishers themselves could have done something to keep prices the same and avoid losing existing subscription auto renewals?
I think the automatic price hike will make digital editions more expensive than some print editions that are delivered through the post. So in addition to opting everyone out of existing renewals, surely publishers are going to have to go in and reset pricing back to the current levels anyway in their local currencies.
I could be wrong but it sounds like a bit of a mess and one that is likely to make a lot of publishers very unhappy. Whether they could have done something to prevent it and didn't understand the procedure, or Apple doesn't offer the necessary flexibility I don't know.
Hahaha, not a chance! Apple will just absorb the extra profit. Tim says thanks! :D