Apple lets some streaming services bypass its 30% App Store fee

Amazon Prime Video Store Iphone 11 Pro Hero
Amazon Prime Video Store Iphone 11 Pro Hero (Image credit: Joseph Keller / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple is allowing some video apps to dodge its 30% cut of in-app purchases.
  • The company has a program for "premium subscription video entertainment providers".
  • Amazon Prime Video is the latest service to take advantage of the program.

Earlier today it was revealed that users were finally able to purchase movies and TV shows through the Amazon Prime Video app on iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. Many were wondering why this change happened, and a new report from Bloomberg has shed some light on the situation.

Apple has reportedly relaxed its policy of charging a 30% fee when certain video streaming apps sell a movie or TV show through its ecosystem. The company says that it has an established program for what the company calls "premium subscription video entertainment providers" that allows them to charge customers using their own payment system rather than having to go through Apple's infrastructure.

"Apple has an established program for premium subscription video entertainment providers to offer a variety of customer benefits ... customers have the option to buy or rent movies and TV shows using the payment method tied to their existing video subscription."

Apple says the program for these providers also brings a lot of other benefits to both them and their customers such as "integration with the Apple TV app, AirPlay 2 support, tvOS apps, universal search, Siri support and, where applicable, single or zero sign-on." A few providers have been found to be part of the program so far, including Amazon Prime Video, Canal+, and Altice One.

Most streaming services that offer in-app purchases must be done using Apple's own payment processing system which charges a 30% cut. It is unclear what Apple deems as a "premium subscription video entertainment provider", so it is tough to say which apps are eligible to become part of the program and avoid that 30% fee.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.