Google is charging iOS YouTube Red subscribers more to protest Apple's policies

Google is charging iOS YouTube Red subscribers more to protest Apple's policies
YouTube Red sounds like a pretty solid deal. You basically get Google Play Music All Access for $9.99 and as a bonus, Google is tossing in an ad-free experience on YouTube... at least, that's how it will work for Android users and those on the web. Unfortunately, if you want to get YouTube Red through the iOS app, you'll have to pay a premium.

iOS users will be charged $12.99 rather than the $9.99 fee it would cost for Android, desktop, and mobile Web users. Google said this is because Apple takes a 30 percent cut of all subscription revenue on its platform, and Google is passing that cost directly onto the consumer in order to be able to give content creators the share of the revenue they are due rather than having a portion simply taken by Apple. 

The unclear part of this policy is when users would be charged this amount. Apple would only be taking the cut of the subscription service if the purchase is made in-app and goes through the App Store. In other cases, developers would bump users into Safari in order to purchase a subscription like this, effectively getting around Apple's policy. Similarly, it is unclear if someone who purchases the subscription on the Web (or already has a subscription based on being a Play Music subscriber) would be charged more just to be able to sign in to an iOS device. That seems highly unlikely though. 

We'll have to update you when this gets cleared up, because Google hasn't listed the iOS pricing policy on any official sites yet. 

source: Ars Technica

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53 Comments

50. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

What a ripoff to pay for Youtube. Google has accrued its massive fortune without subscription services, by tracking and selling user data to advertisers and will continue to do so. The subscription service is a pure cash-grab. It's easy to view the Internet completely Ad-free with the correct free extensions and the correct choice of browser. Only a lazy twit would subscribe. I haven't seen an internet ad in a year and don't plan on starting again until websites introduce advertising that does not violate user privacy.

51. downphoenix

Posts: 3165; Member since: Jun 19, 2010

No, only an ahole would use adblock, etc. Someone who actually supports their favorite Youtubers and would rather do without viewing ads would subscribe to this. Or maybe someone that really wants that exclusive content, which is not at all a draw for me. I am definitely considering the sub though, I hope it works across all devices I use Youtube on (my computer, my phone, PS4, and Wii U), if it does I'll be sold.

52. AlikMalix unregistered

You know when I defended Apple Music being paid only and others said how great it is on android that you can pirate music - I was called an I sheep whose defending greedy Apple.

46. Michael.Parker

Posts: 273; Member since: Aug 22, 2015

iPhone users like to brag about paying more so this is the price you pay for that "Premium" service you think you have.

49. nepalisherpa

Posts: 338; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

iOS users have the choice to pay for the subscription online. They don't have to go through in-app purchase. Stop acting like an idiot!

53. AlikMalix unregistered

Or adblocker like purify does the trick if u want to metaphorically say F.U. google...

43. AlikMalix unregistered

I'm not sure if you guys noticed, but youtube has been completely ad-free recently.

44. tedkord

Posts: 17517; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Not for me.

45. AlikMalix unregistered

On PC and on my iPhone -- absolutely zero ads, and I'm not just talking about banners or popups, I'm talking about video ads that Youtube sneaks in before, during and after the videos... I dont use Youtube App specifically, just using Safari (mobile version of youtube page).

47. 99nights

Posts: 1152; Member since: Mar 10, 2015

I haven't got them on my phone for a long time now but pretty sure my pc gets them though, could be wrong as i don't really use my pc for youtube

33. 99nights

Posts: 1152; Member since: Mar 10, 2015

Consdering the relationship they have it comes as no suprise at all really.

25. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Laugh all you want but the fact is your buddy Google is charging for a community run service now. Remember, YouTube is literally nothing without the users. I'll take apples built Adblock thank you very much.

26. tedkord

Posts: 17517; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

No, they're charging for an ad free use of the service. You can still use it free. Nice try, though.

30. Awalker

Posts: 1987; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

You're getting no ads, background playback, the ability to save files for offline viewing and a Play Music subscription. I think it's a great deal.

15. der_damo

Posts: 213; Member since: Sep 16, 2014

So Google is the smart one for setting higher prices for iOS-users instead of letting the customers do the transaction elsewhere?

16. Awalker

Posts: 1987; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

They can do the transaction elsewhere but if they go through Apple they're going to be charged the higher price.

19. tedkord

Posts: 17517; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

No Google is the better one because they offer you a choice - pay the Apple tax or set up your account outside of Apple.

12. nepalisherpa

Posts: 338; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

Smart users will pay for the subscription online and just use the app. Dumb/clueless users, well they exist on both sides. Also, doesn't Google take 30% from apps and in-app purchases as well? https://support.google.com/googleplay/android-developer/answer/112622?hl=en

14. Awalker

Posts: 1987; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

If a developer sets up their own payment processing in app then Google doesn't take a cut. Google only takes a cut if they're doing the processing. Apple doesn't allow developers to set up their own payment solution in app.

28. nepalisherpa

Posts: 338; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

Cool, didn't know this part.

10. Wulfgardr

Posts: 73; Member since: Oct 29, 2014

Paying more means having more funds for creating even better content, also for you dear Android fellas ;-) thanks for giving us larger screens!

42. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

What content?

6. DnB925Art

Posts: 1168; Member since: May 23, 2013

This is similar to a story ran here about other services like Spotify, etc. are in a competitive disadvantage because of the Apple commission. They would either have to raise prices to cover the fee (and thus make them higher priced than Apple Music) or eat the commission and get less revenue (which would either lower the payouts to the artists or make the service less profitable).

13. nepalisherpa

Posts: 338; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

Google charges 30% for in-app purchases as well.

18. tedkord

Posts: 17517; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Google also allows in app purchases that don't go through Google, and thus do not accrue the 30% charge, Apple does not, in app purchases must go through Apple. No one is forced in Android. That's the difference.

29. nepalisherpa

Posts: 338; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

Didn't know this!

4. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Considering Apple users are most likely to pay for their apps....Google knows where the money will come from and it wont be android users...imo that is, I could be entirely wrong.

2. Goldeneye

Posts: 419; Member since: Jan 22, 2011

No problem, Apple fans will pay whatever Apple's patented policies dictate.

17. 8ozchickenbreast unregistered

Demographically proven, Apple users make more income than Android users. A few bucks extra for an app and all you babies are crying comment after comment. lulz.

22. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

Android user lives matter!

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