Apple and Facebook Reportedly Discussed 'Revenue-Sharing' Ideas in Past

Facebook has been in a feud with Apple since the iPhone maker introduced its App Tracking Transparency feature that lets users opt out of being tracked across apps on its platforms. In the past, however, Apple reportedly discussed potential "revenue-sharing arrangements" with Facebook that could have given Apple a "slice of Facebook's revenue."

facebook tracking notification
According to The Wall Street Journal, which claims that most of the discussions occurred between 2016 and 2018, one idea that Apple discussed was Facebook creating a subscription-based version of its app without ads. Apple would have collected its standard 15% to 30% commission on Facebook's in-app subscriptions through the App Store, but Facebook ultimately decided against the idea, the report claims.

Apple allegedly also argued that the Facebook app's boosted post function, which allows Facebook pages to promote a post to a larger audience for a fee, should have been considered in-app purchases and thereby subjected to Apple's 30% commission.

In a statement, an Apple spokesperson said that the company routinely meets with developers of all sizes to discuss business matters:

"Every day, we meet and collaborate with developers of all sizes to make suggestions, address concerns, and help them continue to grow their businesses," said an Apple spokesman, who added that the rules for app developers like Facebook are "applied equally to all developers because we think that fair enforcement results in the best user experience."

A second Apple spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal there was "no connection between any discussions of partnerships and the ad-tracking changes that were later implemented," according to the report. App Tracking Transparency was implemented with the iOS 14.5, iPadOS 14.5, and tvOS 14.5 software updates released in April 2021.

App Tracking Transparency has resulted in $17.8 billion in lost revenue among Facebook, Twitter, Snap, and YouTube so far in 2022, according to The Wall Street Journal, citing an estimate by data management company Lotame.

The full report at The Wall Street Journal provides additional details about Apple's and Facebook's differing approaches to user privacy and more.

Popular Stories

Apple WWDC24 Apple Intelligence hero 240610

Apple Explains iPhone 15 Pro Requirement for Apple Intelligence

Wednesday June 19, 2024 4:48 am PDT by
With iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia, Apple is introducing a new personalized AI experience called Apple Intelligence that uses on-device, generative large-language models to enhance the user experience across iPhone, iPad, and Mac. These new AI features require Apple's latest iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models to work, while only Macs and iPads with M1 or later chips will...
Apple Intelligence General Feature

Apple Intelligence Features Not Coming to European Union at Launch Due to DMA

Friday June 21, 2024 9:44 am PDT by
Apple today said that European customers will not get access to the Apple Intelligence, iPhone Mirroring, and SharePlay Screen Sharing features that are coming to the iPhone, iPad, and Mac this September due to regulatory issues related to the Digital Markets Act. In a statement to Financial Times, Apple said that there will be a delay as it works to figure out how to make the new...
iPhone 16 Pro Max Generic Feature 2

5 Biggest Changes Rumored for iPhone 16 Pro Max

Wednesday June 19, 2024 5:00 am PDT by
Given Apple's rumored plan to add an all-new high-end tier to its iPhone 17 series in 2025, this could be the year for Apple to bring its boldest "Pro Max" model to the table — the kind of iPhone 16 upgrade that stands tall above its siblings, both figuratively and literally. If you have been holding out for the iPhone 16 Pro Max, here are five of the biggest changes rumored to be coming...
Apple Vision Pro 2 Feature 2

Apple Reportedly Suspends Work on Vision Pro 2

Tuesday June 18, 2024 8:17 am PDT by
Apple has suspended work on the second-generation Vision Pro headset to singularly focus on a cheaper model, The Information reports. Apple was widely believed to have plans to divide its Vision product line into two models, with one "Pro" model and one lower-cost standard model. The company is said to have been deprioritizing the next Vision Pro headset over the past year, gradually...
back to school 2024

Apple's 2024 Back to School Sale Launches, Up to $150 Gift Card With Mac or iPad

Thursday June 20, 2024 4:29 am PDT by
Apple has launched its annual Back to School promotion for college students in the United States. This year's promotion offers a free Apple gift card with the purchase of an eligible Mac or iPad. Apple is also offering students 20% off AppleCare+ plans. Apple is offering a $150 gift card with any new MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, or iMac, and a $100 gift card with the purchase of any new M4 iPad ...
iOS 17

Apple Releases First Public Beta of iOS 17.6

Thursday June 20, 2024 10:18 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first betas of upcoming iOS 17.6 and iPadOS 17.6 updates to public beta testers, with the betas coming a few days after the initial iOS and iPadOS 17.6 developer betas. Public beta testers can get the beta by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the iOS 17 or iPadOS 17 Public Beta....

Top Rated Comments

BootsWalking Avatar
24 months ago
Tim Cook spoke out against Google and Facebook's privacy monetization practices in 2015. One company agreed to pay Apple $10 billion a year to stay in its good graces, the other turned Apple down and is now losing $10 billion a year in lost ad-targeting revenue after Apple changed the default app tracking setting in iOS. I hate Facebook with a passion but this just doesn't sit right with me. Either you're for privacy or not - it shouldn't be situational, based on whether someone hands you bags of money.
Score: 50 Votes (Like | Disagree)
polyphenol Avatar
24 months ago
"Ask App Not to Track" is still wrong. It should be "Tell App Not to Track and Make Very Sure It Can't".
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
siddavis Avatar
24 months ago
So just like many of Apple’s recent privacy stances, it’s mostly just virtue signaling. Not really grounded in principle…
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BootsWalking Avatar
24 months ago

That is not how publicly traded (and most private) for profit companies work. Their job is to make the most money possible for their shareholders, not be bastions of morality for society. Any faith you put into a company to be so is very misplaced.
I'm fine with Apple maximizing profit. Just don't pretend to be a beacon of privacy protection at the same time you're making back-room deals with the companies you're publicly railing against for harvesting users' privacy.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
24 months ago
It will be best for the world and humanity if Facebook does not associate with Apple.

When it comes to privacy, I don't think Facebook has the same core values as Apple does.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KaliYoni Avatar
24 months ago
The last thing I want is some kind of business relationship between Meta/Facebook and Apple. That would be horrible for privacy and security. Then again, Mark Z's non-existent design sense and blinding lack of taste definitely could use a dose of Sir Jony (isn't LoveFrom taking non-Apple clients now?).
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)