Apple ‘needs’ to raise App Store prices, suggests developers do the same

Posted Wednesday on Apple’s developer News and Updates page: “Upcoming tax and price changes for apps and in-app purchases“…

When taxes or foreign exchange rates change, we sometimes need to update prices on the App Store in certain regions and/or adjust your proceeds.

In the next few days, prices of apps and in-app purchases (excluding auto-renewable subscriptions) on the App Store will increase in the following regions. Your proceeds will be adjusted accordingly and will be calculated based on the tax-exclusive price.

    • Bahrain: Increase of value-added tax from 5% to 10%
    • Ukraine: New value-added tax of 20%
    • Zimbabwe: New digital services tax of 5%

Prices on the App Store in the following regions will not change, but your proceeds will be adjusted to reflect the following tax changes:

    • The Bahamas: Decrease of value-added tax from 12% to 10%
    • Oman: New value-added tax of 5%
    • Tajikistan: Decrease of value-added tax from 18% to 15%

In addition, your proceeds will be adjusted accordingly to reflect tax changes for the following content types, if you’ve selected the appropriate tax category in App Store Connect and the changes impact your proceeds:

    • Austria: Value-added tax rate reversion to 10% after temporary decrease to 5% for qualifying e-books and audiobooks
    • Latvia: Value-added tax rate decrease from 21% to 5% for qualifying e-books and e-publications
    • Romania: Value-added tax rate decrease from 19% to 5% for qualifying e-books, audiobooks, and e-publications

Once these changes go into effect, the Pricing and Availability section of My Apps will be updated. You can change the price of your apps and in-app purchases (including auto-renewable subscriptions) at any time in App Store Connect. If you offer subscriptions, you can choose to preserve prices for existing subscribers.

My take: Apple could afford to absorb the costs, but prefers to pass them along. The company didn’t nearly reach $3 trillion by throwing coins in a fountain.


  1. David Emery said:
    This is a case where I’m fully with Apple on moral grounds. App developers should understand the impact of taxes and Apple should make that fully visible. Taxes are the penalty we pay for civilization.

    There are places where it makes sense for Apple to ‘eat costs’, not this one.

    January 13, 2022
  2. Daniel Epstein said:
    Not sure why Apple would absorb any charges due to local tax law changes which are rooted in the App Store hosting of Apps. Pretty standard way of doing business. Again this seems to be people thinking Apple should not make any more money. They are not supposed to be obliged to donate services to App developers who want to make money on their Apps.

    January 13, 2022
  3. Miguel Ancira said:
    I still do not understand why people judge AAPL in a way that is different to other merchants hosting a variety of products.

    HEB invests in the store, the upkeep, the personnel, the paperwork…etc.

    Then they take a cut of whatever is sold inside their store. Same as Nordstrom, Dick’s, WalMart, etc.

    What am I missing?

    January 13, 2022
    • David Emery said:
      Well, to some part of the ‘body politic,’ profits are obscene and need to be managed by the government. The government, as we all know, always operates in our best interests. (That’s actually a legal principle, from what I understand, based on why aspects of tort law don’t apply to suing the government.)

      Much of the legislative and regulatory assault on “big tech” is based on that (obscene profits) principle. The “Willy Horton” principle (‘that’s where the money is’) is also a consideration. Now there are definitely aspects of technology (big and small) that need regulation (US -needs- an equivalent of EU’s GDPR!), but that should be based on policy, and not on ‘capturing excess profits to serve the needs of the people’.

      January 13, 2022
    • Steven Philips said:
      @ Miguel Ancira: “What am I missing?” A “political” mindset?

      January 13, 2022
  4. Robert Paul Leitao said:
    Apple is adjusting prices so that developers don’t see a diminishment of receipts due to tax and foreign exchange issues beyond their control. The actions are intended to benefit developers. Call the “costs” what they are: Taxes. The levies are outside Apple’s control and the control of the developers. Developer receipts rise when taxes are reduced. Apple isn’t taking the benefit of reduced taxes for itself and is passing along the benefit of reduced taxes to the developers.

    January 13, 2022

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