WeChat shuts down reward function on iOS

Updated 2017-04-20 16:30:50 Global Times

China's Tencent Holdings' instant messaging app WeChat closed the function to reward its public account articles on Thursday on Apple's Inc's iOS, according to an announcement on WeChat's official account.

WeChat had broken Apple's rules by leading customers to pay inside the app rather than through Apple's payment system.

WeChat can originally adopt Apple's payment system for its public account operators, Apple told the Sina news portal on Thursday morning.

Liu Dingding, an independent IT expert, told the Global Times on Thursday that "Apple's internal payment system is like a closed kingdom, and has been imposed on many Chinese companies in such sectors as games and social media."

Before that, WeChat had officially announced late Wednesday that it would close the reward function and adjust the way customers pay for WeChat public accounts by scanning a QR code.

However, this also violated Apple's rules because QR codes fall outside the company's payment system, according to a report on the domestic news portal Sohu on Thursday.

"In the end, we regretfully decided to adjust WeChat's reward function on iOS after discussions with Apple," WeChat said.

The Sohu report pointed out that the incident occurred because WeChat did not follow Apple's rules due to conflicting interests.

The App Store has been an important source of profits for Apple since its launch in 2008.

Apple and its partners receive 30 percent of third-party app sales profit, while the third party receives the remaining 70 percent, the report noted.

In addition, WeChat's reward function should adopt Apple's own payment system, meaning 30 percent of each payment goes to Apple, which is obviously unacceptable to WeChat and its public account operators, the report said.

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