Recently Twitter announced Super Follow, a new feature that will allow Twitter users to provide exclusive or additional content like videos, view stories, badges, community groups, tweets, newsletters, and more for a fee to change the revenue generation method on the platform, ahead of iOS 14 App Tracking Transparency release. And since, the company is about to release an in-purchase update, it is liable to pay the App Store 30% commission rate.
To discuss the changes, Twitter’s head of consumer products, Kayvon Beykpour spoke about the new Super Follow feature and Apple’s 30% commission on App Store in an interview.
Twitter exec talks about Apple’s 30% App Store commission and the new Super Follow feature
Twitter will be required to give Apple and Google their commission since the app is available on both platforms, once Super Follow is live and ready to go. Beykpour was asked whether Twitter will talk to Apple in hopes to reduce the 30% commission.
The way I would think of this in the context of Super Follows where we’re building this layer that didn’t exist before — even if that $10 comes down to $7 because of a 30% fee, that’s still $7 more than you’ve been able to make on Twitter than before. So don’t get me wrong, I would love for that to be $9 instead of $7, but at the end of the day, that’s not something that we have direct influence over on one platform. So it’s not a focus for us right now.
I think Twitter may incidentally participate in the transaction in some way to sort of cover our cost, but our goal isn’t to maximize revenue. (…) There are transaction costs, be it the platforms or otherwise, that will need to be involved in that transaction. This is distinct, by the way, from other things we might do in the future, like a Twitter subscription.
Companies like Epic Games and Facebook have spoken against Apple’s “unfair monopolistic” practices. The issue with Epic started when the company included its own payment system to bypass Apple’s 30% commission. When Apple learned about this, it removed Epic’s Fortnite from the App Store. Since then, both the tech giants have been in a legal battle with each other.
Apple announced a small business program late last year. The apps part of the program, earning less than $1 million per year, will have to pay a 15% commission. As it seems, Twitter will not be a part of this program with Super Follow. The program was initiated to show that the Cupertino tech giant values the feedbacks and that it would try and make the situation better.