Apple will let developers redirect users to sign up for services outside the App Store

After complaints from developers, Apple has just made a major announcement in which the company confirms that it will finally let developers redirect users to sing up for services on websites instead of using the App Store’s in-app purchases system.

The announcement comes after an investigation by the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC), which had been looking into Apple’s anti-competitive practices since 2019. The company confirmed to the press on Wednesday that as part of the settlement with the JFTC, developers will be able to tell users that they can sign up, manage, and subscribe to services through an external website.

To ensure a safe and seamless user experience, the App Store’s guidelines require developers to sell digital services and subscriptions using Apple’s in-app payment system. Because developers of reader apps do not offer in-app digital goods and services for purchase, Apple agreed with the JFTC to let developers of these apps share a single link to their website to help users set up and manage their account.

Although Apple mentions that the changes affect “reader” apps, the company emphasizes that this includes apps that offer content subscriptions for digital magazines, newspapers, books, audio, music, and video.

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