Apple’s App Store: Paddle is tinkering with alternative in-app payment methods

Apple faces direct competition in the processing of in-app payments in programs for iOS: The financial start-up Paddle has announced a corresponding new function and has already opened a waiting list for interested developers. The company, which has already made a name for itself with its easy-to-install payment technology with shareware providers and numerous content sellers, wants to offer an API for direct integration into iOS apps in the future. The planned tariff clearly undercuts Apple’s commission.

With the new service, Paddle is responding to a ruling by a US court in the dispute between the iPhone manufacturer and the gaming giant Epic. This had established that Apple is not a monopoly with the App Store. Nevertheless, the company must offer new payment options outside of the app store ecosystem. The litigation is actually not over – both sides have appealed. Paddle wants to offer his new service now and sees himself on the safe side legally.

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Redirection to the browser

Paddle has simply called the service “Paddle In-App Purchase”. A short video shows that, in addition to credit card payments, it can even be used via Apple Pay. However, the current API is not very elegant – users are redirected to a browser. Apple’s own in-app purchases are integrated directly into the operating system or run within the app.

Price hit

Nevertheless, the service should find friends quickly. For example, Paddle only charges a 10 percent commission for purchases under $ 10, Apple usually wants 30 percent here (in certain exceptional cases and with small sellers, 15 percent). When it comes to larger amounts, the aforementioned Apple rates remain, Paddle, on the other hand, only takes 5 percent of sales plus 50 US cents per transaction.

Useful for developers

According to its own information, paddle has other advantages. This gives the developers more control over the payment services to be offered – PayPal in all countries, for example, and AliPay – and, what is important to many, direct access to customer data, including email addresses. This direct relationship with customers is currently largely blocked by Apple, which binds developers even more closely to the App Store than it already does. Paddle also offers direct management of repayments, improved subscription functions (including pausing) and the updating of payment methods. You can also set prices freely and do not have to use Apple’s fixed price groups.

What is Apple doing?

It is still unclear when Paddle’s new in-app purchases will come, but it should be “soon”. It is also still unclear whether initially only the USA will be covered or whether developers in other countries will also have access. In addition, of course, there is also the risk that Apple will throw applications that use paddle in the future instead of the regular in-app routines from the App Store. As mentioned, the proceedings are still ongoing – including various investigations by competition authorities, including in the EU.


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