Netflix has directed iPhone and iPad users to an external page where they can sign up for the service, according to a report by tech outlet 9to5Mac. The tweak is in line with an adjustment Apple made months ago to let “reading” apps like Netflix and Spotify sign up for their accounts via links to their official websites.
In 2018, Netflix just didn’t provide an external sign-up link in its iPhone and iPad apps or even tell users where they could sign up. Before accessing the app, users need to register by navigating to the official Netflix website through their desktop or mobile browser.
This is done to comply with Apple’s rules, which make it difficult for apps to bypass its commission of up to 30 percent on in-app purchases and prohibit developers from providing links to external registration pages. This setup confused new users who (logically) thought they could use the app to sign up for Netflix.
But now, things appear to be changing – 9to5Mac reports that iPhone and iPad users can now see an external link in the Netflix app that they can use to sign up for the service, and The Verge’s Richard Lawler of The Verge noticed this. Users who click on the link will see a message warning them that they are “about to leave the app” and go to an external site. It also notes that any transactions on the external page are not associated with Apple.
"Any accounts or purchases made outside of this application will be managed by the developer "Netflix". Your App Store account, stored payment methods, and related features such as subscription management and refund requests will not be available. Apple is not responsible for the privacy or security of transactions with this developer."
Clicking on the warning will redirect users to an account sign-up page on the Netflix website, where they can enter payment information and choose a subscription plan. It’s unclear when Netflix will begin introducing this new option, and the company did not immediately respond to The Verge’s request for comment. For now, Netflix’s support page still states that users cannot access Netflix’s sign-up page from its iPhone or iPad apps.