Apple temporarily backs down on 30% App Store commission for online-only events

Apple has confirmed that it will back down on its controversial App Store fees for firms who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and have switched to online-only events.

The new exemption, which will remain in place until the end of 2020, will only apply to firms who sell the apps of established brands such as Facebook, Airbnb and ClassPass.

Although Apple usually charges a 30% commission on all in-app purchases, purchases made via these apps for online-only events (concerts, personal training, etc) will not incur the usual commission.

The change of heart follows Apple’s ongoing legal battle with Epic, who makes Fornite. In yet another blow for the company, Facebook accused Apple of adding to the burden of small businesses who are struggling to generate an income during the pandemic.

In a ‘back down’ to its previous rules, Apple has since announced the new concession to do its bit to help.

Brands like ClassPass have had to reinvent their business models during the pandemic, and now sell classes online via their iOS and iPadOS apps. Facebook also allows businesses to host paid events on its app, encouraging micro-businesses to look for new revenue models.

Facebook confirmed the news in a recent press release, adding that businesses could use its facebook Pay system until the end of the year. Airbnb and ClassPass, on the other hand, are subject to a temporary waiver, though most other online event platforms are not eligible.

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