App Store Subscriptions for YouTube TV End in March 2020

  • YouTube TV will no longer support the payment of subscriptions through Apple’s App Store.
  • No official explanations or reasoning were provided for this move, but it’s probably Apple’s cuts.
  • People will still be able to use the app on Apple devices but will have to subscribe to the website.

Those of you who have subscribed to YouTube TV through Apple’s App Store must have already received an email message from the video platform, informing you that the support of this subscription method reaches the end of the road on March 13 this year. The following message was sourced by MacRumors:

“You’re currently subscribed to YouTube TV through Apple in-app purchases, so we’re writing to let you know that, starting March 13, 2020, YouTube TV will no longer accept payment through Apple in-app purchases.

YouTube TV members will still be able to watch YouTube TV content on Apple devices.

You’ll be billed for one final month of service and then your in-app purchase subscription will be canceled automatically on your billing date after March 13, 2020.”

The above message provides no specific explanation as to why YouTube decided to cut App Store subscribers out of the service. It may be that Apple and YouTube couldn’t reach a mutually acceptable agreement on their allotment. Apple is taking 30% of whatever users are paying via the App Store for the first 12 months, and which then drops down to 15%. YouTube may have felt that Apple’s cut is unacceptably large, but this is pure speculation at this point.

The problem for Apple customers now is that the company doesn’t allow apps to link to external, third-party subscription or payment options, so they won’t be able to do this through the app either. Apple says they are doing this to protect the users from malicious and unsafe payment methods, but many accuse them of following this practice in order to pocket that thick 30% cut. YouTube’s payment system should be considered trustworthy and reliable anyway, but Apple is doing no exceptions.

The only option left now for YouTube TV users who would like to enjoy the streaming service on Apple devices would be to subscribe to the website. The drawback that comes with this is that you won’t be able to hide behind Apple’s randomized email IDs (“Sign In with Apple”) that are meant to help boost the user’s privacy. If you don’t mind that, or the extra step to sign up for a subscription, go for it. If many users do this, Apple could be forced to reconsider their share percentages, to the benefit of all developers out there.

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