In-App VS. Apple Pay

Let’s first start with the question, what IS In-App and Apple Pay purchases?

In-App purchases are extra content and subscriptions that you can buy in the apps on your iOS device or computer. However, not all apps offer in-app purchases. For example with some apps you can buy additional content such as a key that unlocks more features on a free app or a sword that gives you more power in a game.

Apple Pay purchases is a service that enables mobile payments and digital wallet apps that initiate secure payment transactions between contactless payment terminals and Apple iOS devices like the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch. In other words, you can make purchases at a store without your wallet, just with a simple touch of an app.

Now let’s really dig into the different items that you can purchase using either the In-App OR Apple Pay. Below are a few key differences between which items you can purchase by using either app-

In-App: sells virtual goods such as premium content for your app, and subscriptions for digital content.

  • Digital books or photos
  • Additional game levels
  • Access to a turn-by-turn map service
  • Subscriptions to digital magazines or newsletters
  • Digital content hosted on Apple servers

Apple Pay: sells physical goods such as groceries, clothing, and appliances.

  • Club memberships
  • Hotel reservations
  • Tickets for events

These days it’s ALL about cost so let’s cover the difference in cost of using the two products?

In-App: 70% of the purchase price of each item you sell within your app is paid to you on a monthly basis- NO credit card fees are applied

Apple Pay: FREE! (Credit card fees do apply)

Make sure to let us know which you find easier to use, In-App OR Apple Pay.

InApp VS Apple Pay

In-App Apple Pay
What is being sold? virtual goods physical goods or service
Developer API use API storekit use API passkit
How much does it cost? 70% to you; 30% to Apple

(per transaction)

(no credit card fees)


(credit card fees apply)

Example of purchase: digital photos, game levels, turn by turn map service, digital magazines, subscriptions groceries, clothing, appliances, club memberships, hotel reservations, tickets for events
  1. Must deliver digital good within the app
  2. Must allow purchase on all devices (mobile, tablet, desktop)
  3. Any virtual credits or currency purchases must have no expiration date.
  4. No porn, hate speech, defamation, or gambling
  5. In-app purchase items cannot be shared across applications
  1. Set up acct w/ payment processor
  2. Register Merchant identifier
  3. Submit Certificate Signing Request
  4. Include an Apple Pay entitlement in your app
Slide table

See: iPhone App Store Submission Checklist