Microsoft is taking aim at Apple with the incoming Windows 11 update. Not only has Microsoft changed the way the Microsoft Store looks, but they’ve also changed the way they share revenue with app developers.
Besides the cleaner presentation and easier to browse search functionality, Microsoft gave its store two big changes. First, they're allowing more apps. Specifically, apps using more frameworks and packaging technologies, such as win32, .net, UWP, Java, and more.
And second is revenue sharing. "Starting July 28, app developers will also have an option to bring their own or a third party commerce platform in their apps," writes Microsoft on its blog, "and if they do so they don’t need to pay Microsoft any fee. They can keep 100% of their revenue."
This is a big change from the way most tech platforms have operated in the past. Previously, giants like Google and Android took 30% of app revenue but also in-app purchases, requiring developers to use either Google Play or the App Store to complete in-game/app purchases. Microsoft is now allowing developers to choose: either they can still use the Microsoft Store and receive a revenue split of 85/15 for apps and 88/12 for games, or they can use their own payment platforms to pocket 100% of the revenue for in-app purchases.
Apple and Epic are locked in a legal battle over in-app purchases and revenue sharing, meanwhile, Microsoft is just telling developers they can keep every penny they make. If you want to cement your platform as the best one for developers to use, that's a pretty good way to do it.
In fact, it seems like Microsoft might have been fostering this paradigm shift all along. Apple said as much in court filings during its trial with Epic, even going so far as trying to get Microsoft's support for Epic in the case thrown out at trial.
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