Twitter may charge more for those who sign up for Twitter Blue verification via an iPhone or iPad, according to reports.
He said signing up for verification can cost $11 instead through the Apple App Store and $7 elsewhere. This probably equates to around £10 on the UK App Store, based on current prices.
Why? Twitter CEO Elon Musk had a rather public spat with Apple over its App Store policy of slashing 30% sales through the store, for developers earning over $1 million per year.
The higher end-user cost offsets Apple’s cut and also seems intended to highlight what Musk likely interprets as Apple’s greed.
There’s some irony here, of course, because Twitter will be charging for a slightly tweaked service that was previously free. And this change arguably makes Twitter verification less valuable than it ever was from a status perspective.
Twitter verification status
Signing up for Twitter’s blue verification is on hold, following damaging cases where people paid for a “blue tick” verification mark and impersonated big companies. Some of the tweets went viral and would have further discouraged advertisers from pumping money into Twitter.
Most notably, one account impersonated pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and proclaimed “we are thrilled to announce that insulin is now free.” The company’s shares fell 4.37% soon after, although it’s unclear if that was a direct result of the viral tweet.
Twitter also recently changed the wording of the verified checkmark, for those who received a blue checkmark in the pre-Musk era, to “this is an old verified account.” It may or may not be noticeable.
Elon Musk hinted that in the future, all audited accounts except for government accounts may need to be paid.
The Twitter CEO met with Apple CEO Tim Cook on Nov. 30 after he suggested that Apple could potentially remove Twitter from the App Store altogether. After the meeting, Musk tweeted that “Tim [Cook] was clear that Apple had never considered doing this.
This isn’t the first time a big app maker has clashed with big app store owners.
Epic Games sued Apple in 2020, challenging App Store rules that mean publishers can’t use third-party payment processing in their iPhone apps to avoid the 30% cut Apple.
As a result, Apple has removed Epic Games’ hit Fortnite from the App Store. Google also removed the game from Android’s Google Play app store in the same month, August 2020.
Epic Games runs its own game store, but its share is significantly lower than Apple’s at 12%.