In the wake of the Japanese disaster, a few iPhone app developers are announcing deals that involve the proceeds of their earnings to go to charities such as the Red Cross. Here is an example. The sad thing is that not all of the revenue is going that way. Apple is continuing to take its 30% cut. It is really puzzling as to why it would do that. One reason is that it faces payment processing costs. But those are of the order of at most 5% so that really doesn’t provide an explanation.
When developers otherwise choose to keep no revenues — i.e., by offering a free app — Apple doesn’t charge anyone anything. Why can’t the same thing or at least all but a nominal amount be there for charitable app sales?