Apple announced a number of changes to its App Store, including new promotion and monetisation options, ahead of its Worldwide Developers Conference next week.
The biggest change is that developers will be able to purchase App Store ads. According to The Loop, ads will only be allowed for apps available via the store, with content related to the App Store description – to ensure ads are related to products available via the portal.
Ads will be sold via an auction system with no minimums and no exclusives, in a move to be fair to smaller players. Only one ad will be included in search pages; developers will not be given information about specific users who interact with ads; and promotional content will also not be available to users of 13 years or under.
Another big change is the wider availability of subscription options for apps, which has previously been confined to some specific categories. This will provide an additional monetisation method, and could provide some interesting options for games companies.
For customers signed up to an app for more than 12 months, developers will see a hike in revenue share to 85 per cent from 70 per cent.
Re/code said that Google responded by also adopting an 85/15 per cent split on subscriptions, but unlike Apple this will apply from the outset, rather than with a one year qualifying period.
It will also be easier for users to “share” apps with friends, through the addition of a share option to the pop-up 3D Touch menu (on supported devices).
And app review times have also been improved, with Schiller telling The Verge that 50 per cent of submitted apps are now reviewed in 24 hours, and 90 per cent within 48 hours.
With these marking relatively significant changes for the App Store, it is interesting that Apple has chosen to reveal them before WWDC – which would seem to have been the natural venue.