On Wednesday, Apple detailed major shake-ups coming to its powerful app store. Those include a new revenue sharing model that would give developers more money when users subscribe to a service via their apps — instead of keeping 70 percent of all revenue generated from subscriptions, publishers will be able to keep 85 percent of revenue, once a subscriber has been paying for a year.
Now Google plans to up the ante at its app store: It will also move from a 70/30 split to 85/15 for subscriptions — but instead of requiring developers to hook a subscriber for 12 months before offering the better split, it will make it available right away.
Sources said Google has already been testing the new split with some entertainment companies (so has Apple, to some extent). Google started running the new model over a year ago with video services as a way to get Play subscriptions to work with its TV streaming offerings like the Cast dongle.
It’s unclear when Google plans to roll out the new pricing plan.
When it does happen, it will be a a natural move for Google, which has pushed developers to invest in Android as much as Apple, where the higher-spending customers tend to be.
The Play unit is also a key part of Google’s strategy to find revenue streams outside of ads.
Google has already tried differentiating itself from Apple by giving app developers the ability to handle payments themselves and keep all of the revenue. Apple requires any payments made within the app to go through Apple’s iTunes billing system — a point that still irks many publishers, though they won’t say so out loud.