Facebook Finds New Way to Avoid Apple's In-App Purchases With Creator Subscription Links

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg today announced changes to Facebook's "Subscriptions" tool, which will see Facebook testing Apple's App Store guidelines in an effort to secure more money for content creators.

Facebook Feature
With Subscriptions, content creators can allow their fans to sign up to pay them a monthly subscription fee, similar to Patreon. Going forward, Facebook is implementing a "promotional link" in the Facebook app for iOS that will allow Facebook users to subscribe to content creators without using Apple's in-app purchase system.

Zuckerberg said that Facebook wants to unlock "opportunities for creators to make more money" as it builds for the metaverse, and "the 30% fees that Apple takes on transactions make it harder to do that."

Facebook plans to offer the "promotional link" alongside in-app purchase options for subscriptions, and when people subscribe to creators using the Facebook link, creators are able to keep all of the money they earn without providing a 30 percent cut to Apple. From a blog post explaining the feature:

Earlier this year, as part of our commitment to supporting creators, we shared that Facebook would not collect any fees from creators on Subscriptions purchases until 2023, at the earliest. Creators, however, must still forfeit 15-30% of their earnings to companies like Apple whenever people purchase Subscriptions within the Facebook app on mobile devices. For recurring payments like subscriptions, this adds up quickly since that fee is paid every single month.

Starting today, we're offering creators the ability to direct people to a website to complete their Subscriptions purchase using Facebook Pay. When people purchase Subscriptions from this website on web or mobile, creators will be able to keep 100% of the money they earn, excluding taxes. Creators can find their personalized promotional link in Creator Studio, which they can share with their audiences, including over email or text.

It is unclear if Facebook's new Subscriptions payment alternative is entirely in line with Apple's App Store guidelines, but a Facebook spokesperson told The Verge that Facebook believes the approach that it's offering has "always been allowed on iOS."

Apple does not allow apps to offer alternative payment options for digital goods at the time, but Facebook is skirting this rule because creators are having people pay via the web, not Facebook, so it's a something of a gray area.

Facebook is also launching a bonus program to pay creators for each new subscriber added through the custom web link to encourage creators to sign up, and it is providing tools that will show creators how much of their earnings are going to fees from Apple and Google.

facebook subscriber incentives
Apple recently made changes to its ‌App Store‌ rules that will see "reader" apps allowed to offer links for account signups outside of the ‌App Store‌ and that will allow developers to use communication methods like email to tell customers about alternative payment options. Apple may also be forced to implement further changes that would allow all developers to offer alternate payment links as a result of a ruling in the ongoing Epic v. Apple legal battle.

Top Rated Comments

TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
11 weeks ago
At this point, I suggest… everyone needs to delete Facebook. Humanity will be better off without Facebook. They are just out here to invade your privacy and make money. This isn’t going to stop. Your privacy and the money is on the line.
Score: 55 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BootsWalking Avatar
11 weeks ago
Apple does not allow apps to offer alternative payment options for digital goods at the time, but Facebook is skirting this rule because creators are having people pay via the web, not Facebook, so it's a something of a gray area.

Facebook's entire business model is one big gray area, where greed intersects with an absence of morality and ethics.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fumi2014 Avatar
11 weeks ago

Amazing how much ignorance you fit into one post.
There's no reason to be rude. It's just my opinion.
If I'm so ignorant, maybe you can educate me?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
11 weeks ago
Hah, good luck with that.

I just hate the name “Meta” so much. Don’t even know what the word means
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kierkegaarden Avatar
11 weeks ago
Facebook, fighting for the creator. That is so meta.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TropN Avatar
11 weeks ago
Apple should create a social media network to rival Facebook. Not just for music, though, aka iTunes Ping.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

facebook reels

TikTok-Inspired 'Reels' Videos Are Coming to Facebook in the U.S. on iOS

Wednesday September 29, 2021 8:18 am PDT by
Facebook today announced that it's bringing Reels, its short-form videos that were previously only available on the Instagram platform, to its main Facebook app on iOS and Android in the United States. While the two share the same name and style, Reels content on Instagram and Facebook will differ. Facebook says it is testing the ability for Instagram Reels content creators to share their...
spotify podcasts

Spotify Competes With Apple by Expanding Podcast Subscriptions Program

Tuesday August 24, 2021 7:07 am PDT by
In late April, Spotify began testing a Podcast Subscriptions program as a way for creators to offer paid subscriber-only content to listeners, and today the streaming music service announced this monetization option is now available to all U.S. creators. Spotify said creators can mark episodes as subscriber-only and publish them to Spotify and other platforms through its podcast creation platform ...
facebook

Facebook Crowned 'Worst Company of 2021' by New Survey

Sunday December 19, 2021 3:47 am PST by
Facebook, otherwise known as Meta, has been crowned the worst company of the year, following a turbulent 12 months of controversies, public backlash, and an eventual entire rebrand of the social media giant, according to a survey conducted by Yahoo Finance. Yahoo Finance every year crowns the best company of the year, with Microsoft taking the top spot for 2021. This year, however, Yahoo...
facebook meta

Facebook Wants to Open 'Welcoming' Retail Stores Where People Can Experience the 'Metaverse'

Friday November 5, 2021 4:17 am PDT by
Facebook, now rebranded to Meta, is looking to open physical retail stores where customers will be able to experience the wide range of products it has to offer, such as Oculus headsets, in a "welcoming" and "judgment-free" experience, according to a new report from The New York Times. The report says that Facebook executives began floating the idea of a physical retail store last year, but...
Instagram Feature 2

Instagram Preparing to Launch Subscriptions to Let Users Pay for 'Exclusive Content' From Creators

Tuesday November 9, 2021 2:29 am PST by
Instagram is preparing to launch in-app subscriptions, allowing users to pay for exclusive content from their favorite creators as the platform looks to move away from conventional ads for monetization, recent App Store listings have suggested. In May of this year, Instagram head Adam Mosseri said in an interview with The Information that the platform was exploring the idea of subscriptions, ...
tim cook mark zuckerberg

Apple's Privacy Rules to Blame for Facebook's Lower Than Expected Quarterly Growth, Says Zuckerberg

Tuesday October 26, 2021 3:46 am PDT by
Apple's privacy rules are "negatively affecting" Facebook, and its business, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg claimed during its most recent earnings call. As a quick refresher, starting with iOS 14.5 and all newer versions of iOS and iPadOS, Apple requires that apps ask for users' permission to track them across other apps and websites. Under the App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework, the...
twitter super follows

Twitter Launches Paid Super Follows, Creators Can Charge Up to $9.99/Month

Wednesday September 1, 2021 11:21 am PDT by
Twitter today announced the official launch of Super Follows, a new feature that allows creators to provide subscriber-only content that requires a paid fee to access. First introduced in February, Super Follow is another method that Twitter is using to monetize tweets and provide content creators with a way to earn money on the platform. Creators who use the Super Follow feature on...
Facebook Feature

Report: Facebook to Change Its Name Next Week to Better Reflect Company's 'Metaverse'

Wednesday October 20, 2021 3:41 am PDT by
Facebook is reportedly planning to change its name to better reflect Mark Zuckerberg's goal of creating a "metaverse," reports The Verge, claiming the change could come as soon as next week. From the report: The coming name change, which CEO Mark Zuckerberg plans to talk about at the company's annual Connect conference on October 28th, but could unveil sooner, is meant to signal the tech...

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
safari icon blue banner

Safari Bug Allows Websites to Track Your Recent Browsing Activity in Real Time [Updated]

Sunday January 16, 2022 3:37 pm PST by
A bug in WebKit's implementation of a JavaScript API called IndexedDB can reveal your recent browsing history and even your identity, according to a blog post shared on Friday by browser fingerprinting service FingerprintJS. In a nutshell, the bug allows any website that uses IndexedDB to access the names of IndexedDB databases generated by other websites during a user's browsing session....
ipad air 4 video

New iPad Air Rumored to Launch This Spring With A15 Chip, 5G, Center Stage Camera, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 8:05 pm PST by
Apple is planning to release a fifth-generation iPad Air with similar features as the sixth-generation iPad mini, including an A15 Bionic chip, 12-megapixel Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage support, 5G for cellular models, and Quad-LED True Tone flash, according to Japanese blog Mac Otakara. Citing reliables sources in China, the report claims that the new iPad Air could be...
Unlikely Products 2022 Feature

Six Rumored Apple Products You're Unlikely to See This Year

Saturday January 15, 2022 2:06 pm PST by
Much has been said about what consumers could see from Apple in 2022, but the company is also working on a handful of rumored products that aren't expected to be unveiled for at least another 12 months, and in some cases a lot longer. Of course, that's assuming they get released at all. Apple works on many potential products some of which ultimately never see the light of day. With that in...
AirPods Pro Gen 3 Mock Feature Red

AirPods Pro 2 Could Start a New Accessory Ecosystem

Friday January 14, 2022 2:34 am PST by
Apple's second-generation AirPods Pro could arrive alongside a new series of accessories, recent leaked images suggest. Alleged leaked photos of the next-generation AirPods Pro obtained by MacRumors showed a charging case with a metal loop on the side for attaching a strap. Apple has not used this design for any of its other AirPod models and it is unclear why it would be added in this...
netflix2

Netflix Again Raises Prices for All Plans, 4K Streaming Now $20 Per Month

Friday January 14, 2022 12:46 pm PST by
Netflix today updated the prices for its streaming plans, and all of its offerings are now more expensive. The Basic plan is now priced at $9.99 per month, the Standard plan is priced at $15.49 per month, and the Premium plan is priced at $19.99 per month. The Basic plan is $1 more expensive, up from $8.99 per month. This plan allows users to watch on just one screen at a time, and it limits ...
tesla carplay solution

Developer Showcases Apple CarPlay Workaround for Teslas

Monday January 17, 2022 7:24 am PST by
A Tesla Model 3 owner has resorted to a workaround to implement Apple CarPlay in his vehicle, amid no sign of official support from Tesla (via Tesla North). Apple CarPlay and Apple Music support are among the most-requested Tesla features, but with no indication that Tesla is willing to implement Apple CarPlay in its vehicles, Polish developer Michał Gapiński took matters into his own...
top stories 20220115

Top Stories: iPhone 14 Pro Rumors, iCloud Private Relay Controversy, iOS 15.2.1 Released, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 6:00 am PST by
Hole-punch? Pill? Hole-punch and pill? Rumors about what the front camera system on the iPhone 14 Pro will look like are evolving rapidly, and it now appears we might be getting a novel but potentially controversial design later this year. Other major stories this week included some confusion and controversy about iCloud Private Relay being disabled for some T-Mobile customers, increasing...