TLDR: Apple doesnt yet understand the value of digital ownership.
Apple has clarified their stance on web3 and it could be catastrophic for one industry in particular, GameFi or web3 gaming. The myopic view from Apple maintains their 30% fees for in app purchases but also implied that NFTs cannot be used as keys to unlock gated content or access exclusive content. When you think about what this means, you wont be able to level your NFTs (if you can sell them on other marketplaces for example). It will be interesting to see how they respond as the community grows, it will be equally interesting if a company like epic games or fortnite starts exploring NFTs in more detail. Digital ownership is inevitable but Apple still wants their vigorish on every transaction.
Apple NFT Announcement Key Details
- Apps may offer an optional feature for viewing one’s own NFTs. However, apps may not provide any additional functionality if NFT ownership unlocks features or functionality.
- Apps can let users browse each others’ NFT collections so long as they don’t direct customers to any outside links or purchase methods other than in-app payments.
- Apple maintains 30% fees for in app purchases, which will be prohibitive given OpenSea 2.5% fees.
- If you violate Apple’s guidelines, you may be forced to remove your application from the App Store.
- Apps must not use their own mechanism to unlock content or functionality such as licenses, augmented reality tags, QR codes, cryptocurrencies, and cryptocurrency wallet, etc.
Apple’s stance is unfortunately not surprising. If they waned or changed their perspective in any way it would likely undermine their entire strategy (and probably be a massive boon for the entire NFT ecosystem). Given the number of legal cases, as well as precedent laid from these cases, changing their strategy now would undermine years of legal battles and be a massive revenue hit to the media giant. Precedent will likely have to come elsewhere as NFTs continue their march mainstream.