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Netflix tests ways of owing Apple less money by skirting iTunes

When members sign up outside iTunes, Netflix doesn't have to give Apple a cut.

Matt Elliott/CNET

Netflix is testing a way to get around the fees it must pay Apple when people sign up and pay for subscriptions through iTunes

The streaming-video giant is telling new or lapsed customers in markets across Europe, Latin America and Asia that iTunes payments are unavailable and is redirecting them to subscribe via a mobile version of Netflix's own site, according to a report by TechCrunch. In a statement to TechCrunch, Netflix said it is "testing the iTunes payment method" in 33 countries. The test reportedly lasts through the end of September. 

Apple takes a 30 percent share of subscription revenue made through iOS apps or iTunes, with that cut dropping to 15 percent if the app holds onto the member for subsequent years. 

Neither Netflix nor Apple immediately responded to requests for comment. 

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