Thursday, March 26, 2009

Apple’s App Refund Policy Is Harsh For Developers

One thing that I love about Apple is that they treat their customers well. I speak from experience from the very few issues that I’ve had with my iPods and iPhone, as they were nothing short of fantastic in resolving those problems. But it looks like Apple isn’t extending that treatment to its application developers for the iPhone and iPod Touch. According to Apple’s return policy, a user can get a full refund on any application within 90 days. Sounds great right? Well Apple states that they will refund the full amount to the user, but have the right to keep their commission from the sale. This means that Apple will give the user his/her money back, but will require the developer to reimburse them. Apple charges 30% of all apps sold and the developer gets 70%, but with this return policy the developer will have to return 100% of the sale to the user even though they only made 70% profit.

Now I understand that Apple would have to pay bank fees on charges, but surely they don’t add up to 30%. Apple should only require the developers to refund the amount that they received from payment, and not the kickback that Apple gets.

Here is the contract:

In the event that Apple receives any notice or claim from any end-user that: (i) the end-user wishes to cancel its license to any of the Licensed Applications within ninety (90) days of the date of download of that Licensed Application by that end-user; or (ii) a Licensed Application fails to conform to Your specifications or Your product warranty or the requirements of any applicable law, Apple may refund to the end-user the full amount of the price paid by the end-user for that Licensed Application. In the event that Apple refunds any such price to an end-user, You shall reimburse, or grant Apple a credit for, an amount equal to the price for that Licensed Application. Apple will have the right to retain its commission on the sale of that Licensed Application, notwithstanding the refund of the price to the end.

Apple, you treat your customers like gold…… But your developers.... not so much!!!


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