Unity promises to make changes to controversial policy

Although it has yet to reveal the specifics of the changes, Unity has committed to change its intended new policy of charging creators a charge each time their game is installed.

Last week, Unity introduced “Unity Runtime Fee” for users who generate more than $200,000 in revenue over the course of a year or reach 200,000 lifetime installs on the Unity Personal and Unity Plus plans. The threshold is higher for creators enrolled in the Unity Pro and Unity Enterprise plans, set at $1 million in annual income and 1 million cumulative game installs. 

The company once more acknowledged the ongoing criticism from developers in a post of apology on X, who have voiced worries about how install fees could financially ruin them and the fact that Unity has retroactively changed the agreement originally made when they first started using it.

“We have heard you,” Unity said. “We apologize for the confusion and angst the runtime fee policy we announced on Tuesday caused. We are listening, talking to our team members, community, customers, and partners, and will be making changes to the policy. We will share an update in a couple of days. Thank you for your honest and critical feedback.”

Unity made an effort to explain that this would not apply to charity games, the majority of demos, and would only affect 10% of customers after the first outrage. The company said, beginning January 1, it will only count “net new installs” on any devices, and developers would not be charged for re-installations, “fraudulent” installs made via botnets and similar tools, trial versions, web and streaming games, or installs made for charitable purposes. 

This didn’t do much to calm developer concerns, and several studios even turned off their IronSource SDKs and Unity Ads to stop Unity from collecting the associated money until the new policy was reversed.

Written by Maya Robertson


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