Apple Inc AAPL is testing a feature wherein users will only be intimated of subscription price hikes by applications and no further opt-ins would be necessary.
What Happened: Developer Max Seelemann shared a screenshot that contained such notification from Walt Disney Co’s DIS streaming service.
Disney+ on the App Store simply contained a notice which said, “The developer, Disney Electronic Content Inc., is raising the price of this subscription.”
An Apple spokesperson did not deny the development but said, “We are piloting a new commerce feature we plan to launch very soon,” according to a report from TechCrunch.
The spokesperson said Apple believes the “enhancement” will be “great for both developers and users."
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Why It Matters: Users can click on a big “OK” button to dismiss the notification but would need to click on a review link to change their subscription.
Seelemann said Disney+ had sent him an email about the upcoming price hikes, implying that he was being opted in automatically.
Disney+ hiked prices in March 2021 with $1 increases to various bundles.
Apple's guidelines on “Managing Prices” state “If you choose not to preserve the price for existing subscribers, they must agree to the increase, which may result in lost subscribers if they don’t accept the change.”
Price Action: On Wednesday, Apple shares closed 1.85% lower at $171.83 in the regular session and fell 0.5% in extended trading, according to Benzinga Pro data.
Benzinga’s Take: Apple’s Disney+ experiment appears to be contrary to its existing developer policies. It remains to be seen how the pilot pans out over time.
Photo: Courtesy of Disney+
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