Apple Updates App Store Guidelines as Part of Agreement With U.S. Developers

Apple today announced it has updated its App Store Review Guidelines with three key changes related to outside-of-app communications, collecting contact information within an app, and in-app events featured in the App Store.

app store blue banner
In late August, Apple announced it had reached a $100 million settlement that, pending court approval, would resolve a class action lawsuit from U.S. developers who alleged that Apple has a monopoly on the distribution of iOS apps and in-app purchases.

As part of the settlement, Apple said it would clarify that developers can use communications, such as email, to share information about payment methods outside of their iOS app, and this is now reflected in the updated App Store Review Guidelines.

Specifically, Apple removed the following sentence from section 3.1.3 of the guidelines:

Developers cannot use information obtained within the app to target individual users outside of the app to use purchasing methods other than in-app purchase (such as sending an individual user an email about other purchasing methods after that individual signs up for an account within the app).

Second, a new guideline under section 5.1.1 (x) indicates that apps may request basic contact information, such as a name and email address, so long as the request is optional for the user, features and services are not conditional on providing the information, and it complies with all other provisions of the guidelines.

Third, Apple has added guideline 2.3.13 to provide clarifications around the requirements for developers to feature in-app events in the App Store. In-app events can highlight in-game competitions, movie premieres, livestream experiences, fitness challenges, and more, and they will start appearing in the ‌App Store‌ on devices running ‌iOS 15‌ and ‌iPadOS 15‌ on October 27. The full text of the guideline is below.

In-app events are timely events that happen within your app. To feature your event on the App Store, it must fall within an event type provided in App Store Connect. All event metadata must be accurate and pertain to the event itself, rather than the app more generally. Events must happen at the times and dates you select in App Store Connect, including across multiple storefronts. You may monetize your event so long as you follow the rules set forth in Section 3 on Business. And your event deep link must direct users to the proper destination within your app. Read In-App Events for detailed guidance on acceptable event metadata and event deep links.

The updated App Store Review Guidelines can be found on Apple's website.

Top Rated Comments

justperry Avatar
9 months ago

The courts need to keep on going. split up apple.
There's (quite) some truth in your comment.
Bigger is not always better.
Apple isn't even the worst one, Amazon sells about everything you can wish for, too much power for 1 company if you ask me, and there are quite a few of those.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cosmosent Avatar
9 months ago
If Google was smart, they would "immediately" drop their cut to 7.5% Across the Board for ALL transactions !

If I was running Google, that's precisely what I would do !

If they think it through (Pros vs Cons), I'm confident they would do it !

Everything else that Google, OR Apple, does, OR attempts to do, is just a short-term bandaid.

7.5% Across the Board for ALL transactions cuts to the chase, & will Head Off (the Regulators) @ the Pass !

BTW, I hope that $100M settlement that Apple cut with the lawyer representing that group, gets thrown-out (by the Judge).

The "Auto Opt-In" Clause should never have been included !

That's a violation of my rights as a U.S. citizen !

I did NOT participate in that Settlement.

I cannot be automatically included in it as if I had !

If the Judge approves it, I hope Cook will be forced to testify before Congress regarding the Settlement !
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LeadingHeat Avatar
9 months ago

Second, a new guideline under section 5.1.1 (x) indicates that apps may request basic contact information, such as a name and email address, so long as the request is optional for the user,
This right here is the key. As long as it’s optional. I don’t want apps to force me to use their [possibly] insecure payment system when I can conveniently and securely use apple’s in app payment method.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
9 months ago
Hopefully Apple is being fair to the world-class developers around the world ?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DaPizzaMan Avatar
9 months ago
This is a good start.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jeezloo Avatar
9 months ago
"section 5.1.1 (x) indicates that apps may request basic contact information, such as a name and email address, so long as the request is optional for the user, features and services are not conditional on providing the information"

Won't this affect apps that use an email address and password for user login? Plenty of apps use email/password to identify a user, and without a user identifying themselves some (usually most) functions are unavailable. So an email address in this case is required to provide services...
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

app store in app events

Apple Calls on Developers to Take Advantage of New In-App Events App Store Feature

Thursday October 21, 2021 10:41 am PDT by
With the launch of iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, Apple introduced a new App Store feature that's designed to highlight in-app events, allowing customers to keep up with new happenings in their favorite apps. Apple is preparing to implement in-app events, and today called on developers to start creating in-app events in App Store Connect. In-app events can highlight in-game competitions, movie...
Mac App Store General Feature

Apple Must Let Dating Apps Offer Alternative Payment Methods in App Store, Dutch Regulator Says

Friday December 24, 2021 9:10 am PST by
Apple must let dating apps like Tinder and Match offer payment methods other than Apple's in-app purchase system in the App Store in the Netherlands, or else it will face fines, the Dutch competition regulator announced today. Specifically, the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) said Apple will have to pay a penalty of five million euros per week, up to a maximum of 50 million euros,...
iOS App Store General Feature JoeBlue

App Store Now Supports Unlisted Apps Discoverable Only With a Direct Link

Friday January 28, 2022 11:27 am PST by
Apple recently announced that the App Store now supports unlisted apps discoverable only with a direct link, as outlined on its developer website. Developers with apps that aren't suited for public distribution can submit a request on Apple's website to distribute unlisted apps, which don't appear in any App Store categories, recommendations, charts, search results, or other listings....
Peek Performance Feature

March 2022 Apple Event Spoiler-Free Video Stream [Video Posted]

Tuesday March 8, 2022 8:49 am PST by
As with Apple's events throughout 2020 and 2021, today's media event kicking off at 10:00 am Pacific Time will be entirely online and likely a pre-recorded stream from Apple Park. Still, some MacRumors readers who can't follow the event as it's being broadcast are interested in avoiding all of the announcements and waiting until the event has ended and is available for on-demand viewing so as to...
cook sept 2020 event

With No Sign of Invites, When Could the Spring Apple Event Be? [Updated]

Wednesday March 2, 2022 7:45 am PST by
Update: We now have invites for a March 8 event! Apple uncharacteristically sent them out less than a week ahead of the event. With no sign of Apple event invites being sent out for the company's rumored spring event on March 8, when could Apple's long-awaited spring event be? Apple CEO Tim Cook speaking at the company's September 2020 Special Event What Happened to the Rumored March 8 ...
wordle

Clones of Popular 'Wordle' Game Flooding App Store, Including One Charging $30 Per Year [Updated]

Tuesday January 11, 2022 1:39 pm PST by
If you're a regular internet user you've probably heard of popular web-based daily guessing game Wordle, created by Josh Wardle. The game, which is entirely free to play, was introduced last fall and has been spreading like wildfire. Wordle asks players to guess a five letter word by identifying which letters are in the word and are located in the right location. Players get six guesses per...
AppleEventLogoFeature

Spring Apple Event Invites Could Be Sent Out Tomorrow

Monday February 28, 2022 2:48 am PST by
Update: We now have invites for a March 8 event! Apple uncharacteristically sent them out less than a week ahead of the event. Invites for Apple's widely expected spring event could be sent out tomorrow if recent reports prove to be correct. In early February, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reported that Apple was planning to host a special event on Tuesday, March 8. Gurman then reiterated the ...
iOS App Store General Feature Dock 2

Apple Defends App Store Changes in the Netherlands as Fines Reach €30 Million

Monday February 28, 2022 9:32 am PST by
Amid an ongoing dispute with the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) in the Netherlands over the App Store, Apple has defended its plan to require app developers to submit an additional app binary for the Dutch storefront if they wish to use a third-party payment processing method. The ACM has ruled that Apple must allow dating apps in the Netherlands to use third-party payment...

Popular Stories

top stories 2jul2022

Top Stories: M2 MacBook Air Release Date, New HomePod Rumor, and More

Saturday July 2, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
The M2 MacBook Pro has started making its way into customers' hands and we're learning more about how it performs in a variety of situations, but all eyes are really on the upcoming M2 MacBook Air which has seen a complete redesign and should be arriving in a couple of weeks. Other top stories this week included a host of product rumors including additional M2 and even M3 Macs, an updated...
Mac Studio IO

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished Mac Studio Models

Thursday June 30, 2022 7:42 pm PDT by
Apple today began selling refurbished Mac Studio models for the first time in the United States, Canada, and select European countries, such as Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. In the United States, two refurbished Mac Studio configurations are currently available, including one with the M1 Max chip (10-core CPU and 24-core GPU) for...
macbook air m2

Exclusive: Apple Plans to Launch MacBook Air With M2 Chip on July 15

Wednesday June 29, 2022 5:23 pm PDT by
The redesigned MacBook Air with the all-new M2 Apple silicon chip will be available for customers starting Friday, July 15, MacRumors has learned from a retail source. The new MacBook Air was announced and previewed during WWDC earlier this month, with Apple stating availability will begin in July. The MacBook Air features a redesigned body that is thinner and lighter than the previous...
13 inch macbook pro m2 mock feature 2

M2 MacBook Pro Much Slower Than Previous Model

Friday July 1, 2022 2:24 am PDT by
Apple's new 13-inch MacBook Pro with the M2 chip features a significantly slower SSD compared to the previous model, resulting in poorer performance in some workflows, it has been discovered. Specifically, it has been found that the $1,299 base model with 256GB of storage has significantly slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the equivalent previous-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro....