Apple now lets subscription apps charge you extra automatically

Hot potato: If you subscribe to a service through the App Store app, you can pay attention to any emails or notifications it sends. Apple just changed its policy to allow developers to raise the price of subscriptions and keep users signed up without requiring their permission.

New App Store Rules say subscriptions can now auto-renew even if prices go up. Previously, users had to sign up to renew their subscriptions if there was a recent price increase.

The good news is that users will receive emails, push notifications, and in-app notifications about their upcoming subscription renewal, which has become more expensive.

In addition, developers are limited in how much they can increase the cost of a subscription before the user’s consent is required to renew it. If it increases by more than 50% and the difference exceeds $5, it is not subject to automatic renewal. An annual subscription can increase by more than 50%, but the price difference cannot exceed $50 without the user’s permission.

Another important factor is that auto-renewal for more expensive subscriptions can only happen once a year – more subscriptions will require consent. This is to prevent dubious developers from multiplying their subscriptions by small amounts over a period of 12 months in the hope that users will be notified.

Apple says it implemented this change because some users missed subscription notifications when the subscription cost increased, causing the service to be interrupted and requiring them to re-enroll. But it’s hard to imagine that most people will be happy with the new policy, despite what Apple believes.

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