With an update earlier this year, Apple allowed “reader” apps to present external links for users to pay for a subscription from outside the App Store. Netflix now supports this feature in its iOS app and saves users paying the fee to Apple.
External subscription button on Netflix
Netflix has announced a new feature for iOS. The “External Subscription” feature allows users to make payments through the company’s official website.
When you tap the external subscription button, a message says, “You’re about to leave the app and go to an external website.” Your iPhone also says, “Any accounts or purchases made outside of this app will be managed by the developer “Netflix.” Your App Store account stored payment methods and related features, such as subscription management and refund requests, will not be available. Apple is not responsible for the privacy or security of transactions made with this developer.”
After tapping the continue button, it will take you to the Netflix website. You can enter your information, choose a payment method, and subscribe to an available Netflix plan for you on this website. Thanks to this feature, Netflix won’t pay the 30% commission for each subscription made within iOS apps, which Apple reduced to 15% for recurring subscriptions after one year.
Indeed, Apple bans outside links, especially alternative payment ones. However, after the Japanese Fair Trade Commission investigation, Apple had to change its in-app link policy to deal with new rules in Japan. Although these rules are just available in Japan, Netflix applied them worldwide.