Forbes reports that Apple is “secretly” buying Google ads for top apps to earn in-app purchases revenue. Several developers have complained that the company is placing ads without their consent and Google will not delete them. It is predicted that Apple will potentially earn millions of dollars in lost revenue and place high advertising costs for its own campaigns.
For the past two years, Apple has been buying Google ads for high-value apps
The Cupertino tech giant has been advertising a range of popular apps for the past two years like Tinder, Bumble, Plenty of Fish dating apps, along with education and learning apps. As per the report, Apple does not mention that the ad is from the company so that they appear from the developer. But, all the ads have the same tracking, connecting the user to App Store. Apple earns 15% to 30% commission for all in-app purchases.
“Apple is trying maximize the money they’re making by driving in-app purchases that people buy through the Apple Store,” one source, who asked not to be named for fear of retaliation, told me.
“Apple has figured out that they can make more money off these developers if they push people to the App Store to purchase there versus a web flow.”
Developers who offer alternative payment methods outside the App Store are not happy with Apple’s decision because the tech giant is taking 30% of the revenue from the developers’ 100% share. The report states:
“It’s hurting developers’ businesses,” one said. “You’re building your growth based on what you think a customer is worth, and if a customer is worth 30% less, your margin is gone.”
Some subscriptions are worth hundreds of dollars a year. Those might be for training classes, education, fitness, or dating apps. Apple’s cost to run an ad might be $5-10 for each successful sign-up, and the revenue can easily be $50 or more.
“The customer doesn’t know,” a source said. “The user doesn’t know that $54 is going to Apple, not the developer.”