App Store payment failures are a big inconvenience for users and developers alike, but Apple will soon let customers solve their issues without leaving the app.
Apple handles payment processing through in-app purchases, but when a payment fails, customers are often knocking on the developer's door. A new system will enable users to get help without ever leaving an app or needing to bother the developer.
According to a developer update shared by Apple, the new billing issue process will roll out this summer and will require no developer action. A system-provided sheet appears in-app if an auto-renewable subscription doesn't renew due to a billing issue.
Before, if a payment failed and a subscription lapsed, customers may lose access to certain billing discounts or grandfathered plans. Customers would then go to the developer to complain, even though payment processing is Apple's problem.
Users must be running iOS 16.4 or later to gain access to this new dialog option.
Developers can enable new features like Billing Grace Period to give customers access to subscriptions while billing issues are resolved. Apple will also use machine learning to optimize payment retries for the best possible retry rate.
Users can update to iOS 16.4.1 today. The new billing processing feature will launch in the summer.