Friday, July 23, 2021

Apple says WordPress doesn’t have to add in-app purchases

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A WordPress developer had tweeted that Apple was going to cut off updates to the open-source iOS app unless it committed to supporting in-app purchases.

It turns out WordPress doesn’t need to add in-app purchases to its iOS app.

“We believe the issue with the WordPress app has been resolved,” Apple said in a statement Saturday. “Since the developer removed the display of their service payment options from the app, it is now a free stand-alone app and does not have to offer in-app purchases. We have informed the developer and apologize for any confusion that we have caused.”

Apple said the WordPress app had originally featured a payment-plans section but didn’t offer in-app payments, violating App Store rules all developers must follow. Apple gets a 30% commission on in-app payments.

Apple’s remarks come after WordPress founding developer Matt Mullenweg tweeted Friday that Apple was going to cut off updates and bug fixes to the open-source software app unless it committed to supporting in-app purchases for WordPress’ payment plans.

Mullenweg said WordPress, the open-source website builder used by around 38% of the internet, agreed on a license when it signed up for and stayed in the App Store. “Open source relies on licenses and copyright,” he tweeted. “I am a big believer in the sanctity of licenses.”

WordPress had agreed to add in-app purchase support within the next 30 days, Mullenweg told CNET in an emailed statement Friday, and was being allowed by Apple to update again.

The Verge reported the WordPress news earlier.

Mullenweg also tweeted a warning to apps that have similar functionality to WordPress on iOS that don’t offer in-app purchases.

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