Facebook scraps its own Credits currency for apps
Published: 20th Jun 2012 13:07:26
Facebook is ditching its own money system, Credits, and will convert the balance of its members' accounts into their local currencies.
Previously, app developers wanting to charge users for virtual goods or other premium features sold via the network had to use the service.
Facebook said it was making the change to "simplify the purchase experience".
The move may help boost the firm's profits. It takes a 30% cut of all transactions made on its network.
A post on its developer blog also announced that it would allow app creators to charge subscriptions from July. Game publishers Zynga and Kixeye had already been allowed to test out the feature.
Facebook had previously market Credits as a "safe and secure way" to make online payments, allowing users to buy them by credit card, PayPal or via prepaid cards sold at retailers.
Members were encouraged to buy large sums at one time by the promise of discounts - for example 50 credits cost $5 (£3.20) but 2,360 credits cost $200, representing what the firm termed an "18% bonus".
However, third-party developers tended to subsequently convert Credits into their own in-game currencies, making it harder for users to keep track of what they were spending.
"Since we introduced Credits in 2009, most games on Facebook have implemented their own virtual currencies, reducing the need for a platform-wide virtual currency," the firm's product management director Prashant Fuloria told developers.
"With local pricing, you will be able to set more granular and consistent prices for non-US users and price the same item differently on a market-by-market basis."
The news comes less than a fortnight after the firm launched an app centre in the US to promote software on its network.
One analyst told the BBC that there was sense in simplifying its processes, but the move carried risks.
"The problem with Facebook Credits was that it was pretty restrictive," said Ian Maude, head of internet at Enders Analysis.
"Doing this takes the headache away from Facebook of having to force people to use its system.
"It still takes part of the revenue which is much more simple, but the danger is that it could end up with a 'farmers market' - a less cohesive solution in which there are a multitude of payment solutions being offered on its network."
At 23:35:48 in WorldA young girl offered US First Lady Michelle Obama her father's CV during questions at the White House's Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day.
At 23:12:26 in SportFormula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone made his first appearance in a Munich court on Thursday, accused of giving a £27.5m ($45m, 33m euros) bribe to a German banker.
At 22:51:02 in EntertainmentA village museum in East Sussex will go up against Tate Britain and the new £35m Mary Rose Museum in a contest to be named the UK's museum of the year.
At 22:42:55 in BusinessBarclays agreed to a $280m (£167m) settlement with the US Federal Housing and Finance Authority (FHFA).
At 22:30:17 in EnglandThe government says it is making "urgent inquiries" into reports Whitehall computers were used to make insulting comments about the Hillsborough disaster.
At 22:22:33 in HeadlinesRussia and the US have accused each other of failing to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine after Kiev launched raids on pro-Moscow separatists.
At 22:19:49 in SportWorld number one Rafael Nadal booked his place in the quarter-finals of the Barcelona Open with a 6-3 6-3 win over Croatian Ivan Dodig.
At 22:13:15 in SportFormer Rangers, Hearts and Scotland defender Sandy Jardine has died at the age of 65.
At 22:00:20 in PoliticsThe zero-hours contract - alongside the payday loan and the bad bank - has gained a kind of totemic significance in the public imagination.
At 22:00:03 in ScotlandScottish independence would leave working people north and south of the border worse off, Ed Miliband has claimed.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Facebook scraps its own Credits currency for apps [Online] (Updated 20th Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1435846/Facebook-scraps-its-own-Credits-currency-for-apps [Accessed 25th Apr 2014]
News In Other Categories
Skin grown in the laboratory can replace animals in drug and cosmetics testing, UK scientists say.
Ten candidates will be vying for three European parliament seats in Northern Ireland, it has been confirmed.
Scottish independence would leave working people north and south of the border worse off, Ed Miliband has claimed.
Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone made his first appearance in a Munich court on Thursday, accused of giving a £27.5m ($45m, 33m euros) bribe to a German banker.
Barclays agreed to a $280m (£167m) settlement with the US Federal Housing and Finance Authority (FHFA).
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com