Apple confirms that subscription apps won’t be obliged to offer free functionality

Apple Whats New in Subscriptions web screenshot 001

There has been a lot of confusion following Apple’s App Store shakeup concerning subscription apps.

First and foremost, does Apple require subscription apps to be functional in some limited way without a subscription, as is the case with apps that use In-App Purchases, or will subscription apps require a subscription to use the app at all? If Apple’s comment to MacWorld is to be taken at face value, both could be true.

Apple clarifies

Here’s the full quote:

We’ve confirmed with Apple that Schiller’s expansive vision is an accurate one: any developer can submit an app that relies entirely on a subscription to perform a task.

It can be effectively a login screen, like with Netflix and Hulu, rather than conform to the broader policy Apple has enforced on most apps that weren’t periodicals and streaming media libraries to date.

Schiller’s examples included enterprise apps, which are effectively in continuous development. In fact, many enterprise apps are already sold on a subscription basis, but typically couldn’t charge a subscription fee directly within iOS.

If you take a look at the “What’s New in Subscriptions” webpage, you’ll see Apple stating that although all app categories are now eligible for subscriptions, the experience “must provide ongoing value worth the recurring payment for an auto-renewable subscription to make sense.”

We’ll surely learn a lot more about new subscription terms next week at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, which kicks off with a keynote on Monday.

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And your $0.02?

So, what do you think?

Should subscriptions apps be required to offer some free functionality or should this be determined on a case-by-case basis?

Source: MacWorld