Coinbase Disables Mobile NFT Transfers, Citing Apple’s App Store Policies

The exchange said Apple is demanding it pay a 30% tax on gas fees used to transfer NFTs.

AccessTimeIconDec 1, 2022 at 5:47 p.m. UTC
Updated Dec 2, 2022 at 9:06 p.m. UTC

Crypto exchange Coinbase (COIN) has disabled non-fungible token (NFT) transfers on its iOS wallet app because of a dispute with Apple (AAPL) over the company’s in-app purchase policy.

Taking to Twitter on Thursday, Coinbase said Apple is demanding it pays its gas fees using Apple software, which would thus make those gas fees subject to Apple’s 30% app tax.

“For anyone who understands how NFTs and blockchains work, this is clearly not possible,” Coinbase said. “Apple’s proprietary In-App Purchase system does not support crypto, so we couldn’t comply even if we tried.”

The dispute is the latest in a months-long saga between Apple and the NFT community. In October, Apple officially refused to exempt NFT trading from its 30% App Store fee, a policy that has kept marketplaces like OpenSea from offering NFT trading within its mobile app.

Apple didn't respond to a request for comment.

“When someone imposes rules that can’t be followed, you should ask why,” Coinbase Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewel tweeted in response to the decision.

Coinbase’s Apple feud comes as new Twitter owner Elon Musk questions the same 30% in-app fee policy and as Musk claims that Apple has threatened to remove Twitter from its app store.


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Eli Tan

Eli was a news reporter for CoinDesk. He holds ETH, SOL and AVAX.

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