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Elon Musk has delayed the launch of Twitter Blue again, because of Musk’s ongoing feud with Apple

1 min read
Elon Musk has delayed the launch of Twitter Blue again, because of Musk's ongoing feud with Apple

Twitter CEO Elon Musk previously stated that Twitter Blue would relaunch this Friday, but the social media company is now delaying the launch in order to avoid paying Apple’s 30% cut of subscription revenue, and how the Cupertino company handles in-app purchases.

Twitter’s tries to withhold Apple‘s fee for purchases in the App Store coincides with Musk’s broadside against Apple, which he launched this week with a series of Tweets. Musk claimed on Monday that Apple had pulled the majority of its ads from Twitter and threatened to remove the social media network from the App Store.

When Twitter Blue does launch, it is expected to look different than Musk originally proposed. According to Platformer, the service will require users to verify their phone number and will cost $8, a penny more than the previous $7.99 price.

Twitter and Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment. According to reports, Twitter no longer has a communications department. Apple has not publicly responded to Musk’s allegations.

As part of his escalating feud with Apple, Musk has complained about the 30% fee. “Did you know Apple puts a secret 30% tax on everything you buy through their App Store?,” Musk posted on Twitter on Monday.

Apple and Google take a cut of any in-app purchases made via their smartphone App Store, including subscriptions to services such as Twitter Blue. The commission can be as high as 30%, but in recent years, both Apple and Google have reduced the fee for smaller developers.

Epic Games, the developers of the Fortnite video game, sued Apple in 2020, claiming that the 30% cut—and the iPhone manufacturer’s rules requiring developers to pay it—were anti-competitive.

Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers ruled in 2021 that Apple must allow developers to link to payment systems outside of the App Store in order to avoid the 30% cut, but she stopped short of declaring Apple a monopoly. Epic Games intends to appeal the decision (via Reuters).

Twitter could try to direct its users to payment services outside of the App Store, keeping the 30% revenue cut in Twitter’s pocket rather than Apple’s. Twitter Blue’s latest delay is the latest setback for the service, which has been delayed several times since its failed launch.

Musk first announced the paid-verification service on November 6. Some Twitter Blue users immediately impersonated the official accounts of companies such as Eli Lilly, Lockheed Martin, and Nintendo, sharing jokes and false information. Twitter’s service was quickly suspended.

Musk has not specified when the service will be reinstated. The Twitter CEO initially stated that the service would return on Nov. 29, but has since stated that it has been “indefinitely postponed,” and that it will be launched on Dec. 2.