Apple today announced that it is removing iOS and Mac apps from its affiliate program, which means websites who share links to Apple apps will no longer be able to earn affiliate revenue for directing traffic to Apple's App Stores.
According to Apple, it has made the decision to remove apps from its affiliate program due to the launch of the revamped App Stores for iOS and Mac. Apple rolled out a revamped iOS App Store in iOS 11, and is planning to introduce a new Mac App Store in macOS Mojave.
Thank you for participating in the affiliate program for apps. With the launch of the new App Store on both iOS and macOS and their increased methods of app discovery, we will be removing apps from the affiliate program. Starting on October 1st, 2018, commissions for iOS and Mac apps and in-app content will be removed from the program. All other content types (music, movies, books, and TV) remain in the affiliate program.
Apple currently offers its affiliate partners 7 percent of the money generated from an iTunes related purchase, including apps. Last year, Apple attempted to drop that rate to 2.5 percent on apps, but kept it at 7 percent after backlash from developers and publishers. Commission rates were, however, dropped to 2.5 percent on in-app content.
Apple plans to remove commissions for iOS apps, Mac apps, and in-app content from its affiliate program starting on October 1, 2018. Other content, including music, movies, books, and TV, will remain in the affiliate program.