YouTube TV ditches App Store billing, will cancel accounts that don’t switch payment methods

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YouTube TV will become the latest subscription service to drop support for Apple’s in-app billing system. CNET reports that starting in March, YouTube TV will no longer support billing via Apple and that users should switch their billing settings before then.

According to YouTube, subscribers who currently pay for YouTube TV via an App Store in-app purchase will have their accounts automatically canceled on the first billing date after March 13. Those subscribers will have until that day to set up a new form of payment.

In a statement, YouTube said that Apple “continues to be an important partner,” but it did not go into detail about the reasoning behind this change.

“YouTube TV no longer supports in-app purchases on iOS,” a YouTube spokeswoman said in a statement. “Apple continues to be an important partner for YouTube, and our users can still enjoy their favorite content across iOS devices.”

YouTube TV is the latest subscription service to move away from Apple billing. It’s also taking a more aggressive approach than others by forcing existing customers to switch their billing settings or risk having their subscriptions canceled. For instance, Netflix ditched in-app subscription billing on iOS last year, but only for new customers.

More companies are growing skeptical of Apple’s revenue sharing through the App Store. Apple charges a 30% fee in the first year of a subscription billed through the App Store, but that fee drops to 15% after that first year. By moving all customers off of App Store billing, YouTube will no longer have to share YouTube TV revenue — which is likely unprofitable or running on razor thin margins — with Apple.

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