Apple can no longer accept debit and credit cards in its App Store as enforcement begins for new rules handed down by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) last year, according to multiple media reports.
India’s central bank passed the new auto-debit payment rule in October 2021. The mandate goes beyond Apple and requires any bank, payment gateway or financial institution to get approval for auto-renewals that are 5,000 rupees ($67) or more. Customers can be notified by notifications, eMandates or Additional Factors of Authentication (AFA), PYMNTS reported.
Customers in India now have to pre-fund their Apple ID balance to purchase apps, media, or subscriptions through Apple using UPI and Netbanking payment methods. This includes Apple TV+ subscriptions, Apple Music subscriptions, iCloud services, or the individual purchase of movies or shows through iTunes.
“Regulatory requirements in India apply to the processing of recurring transactions. If you hold an Indian debit or credit card and you have a subscription, these changes impact your transactions. Some transactions might be declined by banks and card issuers,” Apple said on its support page, per The News Minute.
Developers were asked to warn customers about the change, and Apple ran a promotion offering customers in India a 20% off bonus when adding funds to their Apple ID. Apple updated its supported payments information for India, which now lists Apple ID balances, Net Banking and UPI.
Apple emailed users in India stating that the change was due to RBI regulations and that all campaigns using a credit card issued from Indian banks would be placed on hold starting June 1. Customers were advised that they could also use a credit card issued by a bank outside of India.
Netflix, YouTube and Google have also been impacted by the new auto-debit rule, with people complaining on Twitter that their cards are being declined for auto-renew subscriptions.