Netflix Has Begun Directing Users Of The iPhone And iPad To An External Sign-up Page

According to rumors, Netflix has started sending iPhone and iPad customers to an external website where they may sign up for the service. The modification came shortly after Apple began enabling links to account registration pages on websites of “reader” applications that offer access to digital material, such as Netflix and Spotify.

As recently as 2018, Netflix’s iPhone and iPad applications didn’t offer an external signup link or even let customers know where to join up. Instead of using a web or mobile browser to use the app, users had to first sign up for the service on the Netflix website. This was done to abide by Apple’s policies, which made it challenging for applications to get around their up to 30% commission on in-app sales and prohibited developers from providing a link to an external sign-up page. For new customers who (logically) believed they could register for Netflix via the app, the setup was perplexing.

However, the Netflix app now includes an external link that users of the iPhone and iPad may utilize to join up for the service. A warning alerting users that they are “about to leave the app” and visit an external website appears when they click the link. Additionally, it states that Apple is not involved in any transactions made on the linked page:

The app’s creator, “Netflix,” will handle any transactions or accounts established elsewhere. You won’t be able to access your App Store account, saved payment methods, or connected services like subscription management and refund requests. Apple disclaims all liability for the security or privacy of any transactions you may have with this developer.

Users who opt to ignore the warning are sent to Netflix’s website’s account sign-up page, where they may enter their payment details and select a subscription plan. It’s unclear when Netflix began offering this additional choice.

Users still cannot access Netflix’s registration page through its iPhone or iPad app, according to the company’s help website as of right now.

Apple still maintains a tight set of rules that developers must adhere to, such as not integrating any cost information with a link to external sign-up pages, even if it has started to loosen some of its standards for reader applications. The “entitlement” that developers must provide in order to obtain approval to include the external link in their app.

Apple has come under fire for its regulations requiring the majority of developers to utilise the App Store billing system, for which Apple takes a fee. Apple began enabling developers to utilise third-party payment processors in applications launched in South Korea as a result of a new regulation that was enacted there. Following a protracted legal dispute with the Dutch regulator, it has also made certain improvements to dating applications made available in the Netherlands.

But if the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) legislation is passed, Apple would have much more adapting to do since it would be required to permit the use of third-party payment systems, side-loading, and third-party app stores. By providing developers the option to utilise an alternate charging structure for apps sold in Europe, Google has already begun preparing for the new legislation.