Apple released guidelines for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and clarified rules around cryptocurrency payments and crypto exchanges, saying apps selling NFTs must now go through the tech firm's in-app purchase system.
Apple doesn't mind crypto exchanges or apps that allow trading of digital tokens and currencies as long as those exchanges meet the regional licensing requirements. Under the new rules, however, apps that sell NFTs “may not include buttons, external links, or other calls to action that direct customers to purchasing mechanisms other than in-app purchase.” It also allows them to use in-app purchases to “sell and sell services” related to NFTs such as “minting, listing, and transferring.” Cryptocurrency isn't an option for payment.
- Apple has clarified its rules on cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), describing what it allows apps to do.
- While apps can still allow users to sell NFTs, they must go through Apple’s in-app purchase system, which takes up to 30% of the transaction.
- App makers have criticized this requirement and argue that this harms the overall crypto ecosystem.
Major Restriction on NFTs
The guidelines mean that any trading service involving NFTs must use Apple's in-app payment system, which charges a 30% fee. That slice restricts the type of services that can be offered involving NFTs.
App Makers Criticize the Move
App makers and crypto community members have long criticized Apple's cut, saying it crushes new technology. Some say the policy harms NFT integration and limits the accessibility of the crypto ecosystem because the rules stipulate that “apps may not use their own mechanisms to unlock content or functionality,” such as cryptocurrencies or cryptocurrency wallets.
The Bottom Line
As the crypto market tries to rebound from this year's losses, costly fees and limited access to crypto ecosystems make adoption more difficult. The guidelines on crypto and NFTs come just a few days before Apple's fourth-quarter earnings, and investors will focuse on sales of the iPhone 14 series, whose production has decreased in the past few weeks.