As promised in March, today Facebook launched the currency payments API for all game developers to integrate into their existing and future apps. After September 12th, the social network will no longer support Facebook Credits.
The move from Credits to local currency pricing was decided upon for several reasons. First, it simplifies the purchase experience for members. Second, it improves the performance of the payment flow. And finally, it makes it easier for developers to price virtual goods for a global audience.
With the new payments API, you’ll also be able to set prices for in-game items by market so different countries see the most marketable prices relevant to their currency. You’ll also be able to cache static prices with Facebook and remove the blocking server request to collect item information at time of purchase, greatly improving your app’s performance.
The social network is giving you 90 days to migrate to local currency payment. After the September 12th deadline, Facebook Credits will no longer be supported. In order to continue accepting payments, plan to migrate your app early to give yourself enough time to integrate and adjust to the new pricing system.
“In an effort to make it easier for developers to migrate, we have created a simple API that allows you to test the new payment dialog and roll it out incrementally to random groups of users,” explained Facebook. “This will let you compare the legacy Credits system side-by-side with the new local currency one to ensure the migration will be a good experience for you and your users.”
As game developers, you’re highly encouraged to create your own in-game currency as it gives you more control over the pricing of your in-game items. To determine which currencies to support, Facebook recommends using the App Insights tool, which can show you who currently frequents your app and from what countries.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.