SCA for in-app subscriptions. How it affects developers?
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SCA for in-app subscriptions. How it affects developers?

Vitaly Davydov
Vitaly Davydov

Table of Contents

New legislation changes, referred as Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) requirements, are coming to the EU affecting all online purchases. Apple released news about how in-apps will work with it.

All users in the EEA countries must confirm their online purchases by authenticating a bank card for every transaction greater than €30 (around $36 USD on 24.12.2020) starting 31 Dec 2020.

Countries affected: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland, and Sweden.

But not UK or Switzerland.

What it means for mobile developers

When purchasing in-app, user is asked to authenticate credit card. So user is redirected to a bank app in order to confirm the request, and then he returns back.

What we understand so far for EEA countries

Selling something in-app with a price greater than €30 such as a yearly subscription may be tricky as there's one more step in your sales funnel. Instead of just confirming transaction with Face/Touch ID, user must confirm it with the bank.

This little change may affect your entire economy in EEA and conversions may drop with expensive purchases.

What you can do in this case is:

  • Reduce a price for yearly subscriptions.
  • Show different options for users from EEA countries.
  • Use Adapty A/B testing solution for targeting. Exclude EEA countries for expensive purchases and show them only <= €30 purchases.
Adapty Targeting

What we don't know yet

  • How it works for subscriptions with trial periods? Does user need to confirm activating trial?
  • How "bank verification" works? For example, is it an SMS code that a user need to insert into a webview?
  • Is there an API for bank apps to support?

Changes will be live at 31.12.2020 and we'll see how it works.