Apple in 2011 Considered Collecting a 40% Fee From Some Subscription Apps

Apple once considered taking a 40 percent cut from some subscription apps, according to documents shared today by the House Judiciary Committee (via Bloomberg).

appleappstorefeesemails
Back in March 2011, Apple's services boss Eddy Cue emailed three other executives and suggested Apple should "ask for 40% for the first year only," but that a "few deals" needed to be worked out for Apple to "see what is right."

One of the executives, Jai Chulani, wrote back that Apple could be "leaving money on the table" asking for 30 percent in the first year of subscriptions.

At the time, the emails referred to apps that offered digital content like Hulu on the Apple TV rather than apps running on iPhone and iPad, though Apple had launched App Store subscriptions in February 2011.

Apple ultimately decided to take a 30 percent cut from subscriptions purchased through the ‌App Store‌, and later reduced that rate for longer running subscriptions. Today, when customers sign up for a subscription within an app, Apple collects 30 percent for the first year, and 15 percent for the second year and all subsequent years.

Apple CEO Tim Cook during his testimony at today's antitrust subcommittee meeting emphasized that Apple has not changed its ‌App Store‌ fees since the ‌App Store‌ launched, and has in fact lowered them, referencing the 15 percent cut.

Ahead of the antitrust meeting, Apple also commissioned a study suggesting Apple's ‌App Store‌ fees are in line with the fees collected by other digital marketplaces and service providers.

Top Rated Comments

boss.king Avatar
13 months ago

30% is perfectly fair. 40% is not.
Can I ask you to explain how you came to that judgement? What makes 30 so much more acceptable than 40? Why not 25? Why not 60? Are you just drawing an arbitrary line in the sand because it's what we're used to, or is there some calculation you've run here?
Score: 58 Votes (Like | Disagree)
boss.king Avatar
13 months ago

because it's the industry standard that Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft has adopted with their stores.
But it's the industry standard in part because that's where Apple set it. If they had originally been debating between 40% or 50%, would you be arguing that 40% is perfectly fair but not 50?
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
japanime Avatar
13 months ago
Amazon takes up to 65 percent (yes, you read that right) from independent publishers of books sold through the Kindle store.

I'm not suggesting that by "only" taking 30 percent (or 40 percent) is by any means fair. But Amazon is getting away with highway robbery.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Apple_Robert Avatar
13 months ago
Much ado about nothing, seeing how that did not come to fruition. Not sure why it is story worthy 9 years after the suggestion.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LN3000 Avatar
13 months ago
I don't see how this is really much of a story. One person suggesting something doesn't mean it reflects company values. I could suggest Mickey Mouse becoming president, but that doesn't mean all of America wants Mickey Mouse to be president (although....)
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving Avatar
13 months ago
Greedy Apple SMH!!!!!
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Pro Display XDR Yella

Apple Working on External Display With Built-In A13 Chip

Friday July 23, 2021 9:37 am PDT by
Apple is developing an external display that includes an A13 chip with Neural Engine, according to a new rumor from 9to5Mac. The A13 chip with Neural Engine would presumably serve as an eGPU, though details are light at this time. Having a CPU/GPU built into the external display could help Macs deliver high-resolution graphics without using all the resources of the computer's internal chip....
maxresdefault

Apple Music to Livestream Premiere of Kanye West's New Album 'Donda' on Thursday

Wednesday July 21, 2021 1:49 am PDT by
Apple Music on Thursday will host a global livestream for the premiere of Kanye West's tenth studio album, titled "Donda." The sold-out event will take place at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, and Apple Music's livestream will start at 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. The livestream was revealed in a Beats Studio Buds ad that aired during the NBA Finals. The ad features U.S. track...
airpods 3 gizmochina Feature

AirPods 3 Rumored to Launch Alongside iPhone 13 at Expected September Event

Friday July 23, 2021 12:54 am PDT by
The third-generation AirPods will likely launch at the same event revealing Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup, according to a report from DigiTimes, which makes the claim citing sources familiar with the matter. The report as a whole echoes previous reporting that production of the third-generation AirPods will kickstart in August, meaning a launch shortly after can be easily expected. DigiTi...
idos 2 app ios

Apple to Pull 'iDOS 2' DOS Emulator From App Store

Thursday July 22, 2021 3:22 pm PDT by
iDOS 2, an app designed to allow users to play classic DOS games, will soon be pulled from the App Store, the app's creator said today. According to iDOS developer Chaoji Li, he tried to submit an iDOS update with bug fixes to the App Store, but was told that the update was rejected because it violated the 2.5.2 App Store guideline that says apps cannot install or launch executable code.Durin...
iPad mini pro feature

Next iPad Mini Won't Feature Mini-LED Display, Claims Display Analyst

Friday July 23, 2021 8:07 am PDT by
Yesterday, DigiTimes claimed that the upcoming iPad mini will feature a mini-LED display, but now, display analyst Ross Young is going at odds with that report, claiming that while the updated iPad mini continues to be on track for a release this year, it won't feature a mini-LED display. Young says he "confirmed" with Radiant Opto-Electronics, who DigiTimes claims would provide Apple with...
AirPods Pro Beta Firmware

AirPods Pro Beta Firmware Now Available

Wednesday July 21, 2021 6:50 am PDT by
Upcoming AirPods Pro firmware updates are now available to Apple Developer Program members as beta versions. AirPods Pro firmware beta one features FaceTime Spatial Audio and Ambient Noise Reduction. Custom Transparency mode, including Conversation Boost, was initially expected to be included in the beta but appears to have been delayed for a later version. Apple made the announcement...
iPad mini pro feature

Next-Generation iPad Mini Will Reportedly Feature a Mini-LED Display

Thursday July 22, 2021 9:03 am PDT by
Apple is widely rumored to be planning a new iPad mini with a significant redesign, including a larger 8.5-inch to 9-inch display with slimmer bezels, a Touch ID power button instead of a home button, a USB-C port instead of a Lightning connector, and more. According to a paywalled preview of a DigiTimes report today, the sixth-generation iPad mini will also feature a mini-LED display:BLU...
discount m1 macbook yellow

Deals: Shop Record Low Prices Across Apple's Full MacBook Pro and MacBook Air Lineup (Up to $499 Off)

Friday July 23, 2021 8:23 am PDT by
Apple's MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lineup is seeing all-time low discounts across the board today, including the 2019 16-inch MacBook Pro, 2020 13-inch MacBook Air, and 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. 13-Inch M1...
ios wifi settings

Apple Confirms iOS 14.7 Fixes WiFi Bug and Many Other Vulnerabilities

Wednesday July 21, 2021 11:38 am PDT by
Following the release of iPadOS 14.7 this morning, Apple has shared details on the security updates that are included in iOS 14.7, iPadOS 14.7, macOS Big Sur 11.5, watchOS 7.6, and tvOS 14.7, all of which came out this week. Notably, Apple's documentation confirms that the iOS 14.7 and iPadOS 14.7 updates address a WiFi-related vulnerability that could impact iOS devices when joining a...
macOS Big Sur Feature Orange

Apple Releases macOS Big Sur 11.5 With Podcast App Updates and Bug Fixes

Wednesday July 21, 2021 10:15 am PDT by
Apple today released macOS Big Sur 11.5, the fifth major update to the macOS Big Sur operating system that launched in November 2020. macOS Big Sur 11.5 comes two months after the release of macOS Big Sur 11.4. The new ‌‌‌‌‌macOS Big Sur‌‌‌‌ 11.5 update can be downloaded for free on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System Preferences. macOS Big Sur...