How to handle subscription model?

Discussion in 'iPad Development' started by iLuviPad2, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. iLuviPad2
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    iLuviPad2 iPF Noob

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    Hi

    I have a universal app which works as a standalone and also integrates with a desktop app for Mac at the backend. I am looking to use a subscription model for the app.

    <100 records $15 per month
    <200 records $25 per month
    <500 records $40 per month

    etc

    How do I handle this?

    Do I need to use the app store to deploy apps? Can I avoid the 30% commission that apple charges?

    Thanks
  2. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I've moved your post to the iPad development forum, where it will receive more attention.
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  3. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    The only way to avoid paying Apple's 30% is to not offer the subscription through the store or the app. You would need to keep the purchase/transaction separate. Amazon couldn't even get away with a link to their website in the app.

    Lots of apps do this. The good ones make it clear in the App Store description that the app needs a subscription to SomeCompanySite for full functionality.

    That means you'll need a website with secure authentication/sign-in, a payment processor separate from Apple, and some kind of account setup in the app that authenticates back to your site.

    I'm not a developer, but from everything I can tell, this is how it's done.
  4. scifan57
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    scifan57 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I buy ebooks from Amazon for my Kindle app and that's exactly how Amazon does it to avoid paying the 30% commission to Apple on the sale of every ebook.
  5. iLuviPad2
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    iLuviPad2 iPF Noob

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    Thanks for your advice. So it looks like the way to go is offer the download for free. When they want to register take them to the payment gateway once the payment has been processed send a verification link which will then allow access to the app.
  6. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    Just make sure that you don't offer the registration link from within the app. Anything that sends the user to your payment method from within the app will be rejected. About all you can do is provide a place or notice in the app that says you must be registered with such and such service for the app to work.


    All in all, after you get done setting up a payment method and a verification site; it might just be cheaper (and far easier) to let Apple have the 30%. Also consider that anything that gets in the way of the impulse buy is going to cost you customers. Extra steps mean time to put off and/or rethink the purchase.

    Part of what you are paying Apple 30% for is so that they take care of all the back end stuff and make it ridiculously easy for your customers to pay.
  7. iLuviPad2
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    iLuviPad2 iPF Noob

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    Well the 30% is ok for purchases but for subscriptions it can be quite a hit! And you are right at the moment the registration is from within the app (ouch).

    Say for example we have 1000 subscribers. @ $25 per month = $25,000 30% of which would be $7500 per month ongoing forever!
  8. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    If you can be reasonably sure of getting that kind of income, you're right. You should be able to obtain the servers, services, and someone to maintain them for considerably less than $7500 a month.

    Best of luck with your project.

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