A growing number of software companies are looking to bypass the dominant app store gatekeepers at Apple and Google – selling their services directly to consumers and undercutting the tech giants that for years have controlled how most of iPhone and Android users discover, download and pay for their apps. The revolt is being led by companies such as Netflix, which became the latest firm to cut off a lucrative relationship for Apple when it confirmed that new customers will no longer be able to pay their monthly subscription fees through iTunes. Instead, subscribers are being redirected to make payments on Netflix’s own website. Netflix’s decision follows that of another major online service, Spotify, which ended support for in-app subscription payments in 2016. And amid the explosive growth of its video game Fortnite, digital publisher Epic Games has said it intends to create its own app store for games in a bid to compete with existing online storefronts. The company already offers its Android app for Fortnite outside of the traditional Google Play Store. Netflix’s announcement could save it hundreds of millions of dollars and is potentially devastating for Apple. Through in-app payments, the iPhone maker currently takes a 30… Read full this story
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