With Apple increasing in-app purchase prices in select regions, Azur Lane and others announce how they plan to adapt

With Apple’s recent announcement of price increases on apps and in-app purchases on the App Store in select regions, iOS game developers and publishers have started notifying players of their plans to deal with the change. While the price changes on in-app purchases are unavoidable, many companies are increasing the number of items players will receive from these purchases to maintain the same unit price.

Those who release apps to the App Store are not completely free to set prices as they please. Prices must conform to a tier list that decides the pricing levels that can be used.

Apple’s recent announcement of price increases in select regions, including Japan, will take effect starting October 5. After that, a 120-yen (roughly $0.83) in-app purchase, which is equivalent to the $0.99 tier in the US, will at minimum now cost 160 yen (roughly $1.11). In Japan, the increase is roughly 30% across all pricing levels.

The pricing tier list in Japan before and after the change

In response to the situation, companies with iOS games have started revealing how they plan to deal with the change. In general, companies are moving to maintain the same unit price despite the price increase. In addition, many are applying these changes to their Android apps as well to maintain uniformity.

One example is a notice from the Azur Lane official Twitter account for players in Japan showing the details of their changes. Currently, the cheapest in-app purchase in the game is 120 yen for a pack of 60 Gems. With the price increasing to 160 yen, the number of Gems is being updated to 80. In both cases the price of a Gem is still 2 yen which keeps the price of each Gem the same. Other in-app purchases are being updated along the same lines though not all of them perfectly scale to the same value.

Megido 72 and Devil Butler with Black Cat have also announced changes that will roughly maintain the same unit price of their in-app purchases. In the case of Romancing SaGa Re;universe, the price of the in-game currency is being lowered a tiny bit per unit.

Idoly Pride has its in-game currency of Blue Diamonds equate to 1 yen per Blue Diamond and will be maintaining this pricing after the change.

Other games have also notified players that they are looking into and planning to implement changes such as Uma Musume: Pretty Derby, Hatsune Miku: Colorful Stage!, Octopath Traveler: Champions of the Continent, The Idolmaster Cinderella Girls: Starlight Stage, Idolish7, and more. Many of these will be maintaining their unit price.

This isn’t the first time Apple has changed the pricing tier list for the App Store, with previous sudden changes forcing companies to act. For Apple, the changes can be seen as a response to current exchange rates, but it’s not something that’s likely to sit well with developers and users.

Written by. Nick Mosier based on the original Japanese article (original article’s publication date: 2022-09-26 19:39 JST)