(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. has relaxed a controversial policy that took a 30% cut of payments when video apps on its platform sold TV shows and movies.
Amazon.com Inc. started taking advantage of the change on Wednesday, selling and renting movies via its Prime Video service on Apple devices without needing to give Apple a share of the money.
“Apple has an established program for premium subscription video entertainment providers to offer a variety of customer benefits,” the Cupertino, California-based technology giant said in a emailed statement. The program applies to multiple services, including Amazon Prime Video. Canal+, a unit of Vivendi SA, started participating in 2018. Altice One, a cloud-based video service from Altice USA Inc., signed up in February.
The program lets these premium services charge viewers via their own payment method instead of Apple’s in-app-purchase system, which takes a 30% cut. “Customers have the option to buy or rent movies and TV shows using the payment method tied to their existing video subscription,” Apple said in the statement.
Apple said the program also provides a number of other benefits, including “integration with the Apple TV app, AirPlay 2 support, tvOS apps, universal search, Siri support and, where applicable, single or zero sign-on.”
Most other types of apps and services on Apple devices like the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV require the use of Apple’s in-app-purchase system for downloads and upgrades. Some developers, including Spotify Technology SA, have said Apple’s system is an antitrust issue and have had to raise their prices by 30% for iPhone users to offset Apple’s fees.
Read more: Apple and Google Face Growing Revolt Over App Store ‘Tax’
(Updates with details of program participants in fourth paragraph.)
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