Jump to content

Reddit’s API pricing results in shocking $20 million-a-year bill for Apollo

Recommended Posts

The Reddit app icon on a smartphone screen.

Enlarge / The Reddit iOS app icon. (credit: Getty Images | Yuriko Nakao )

Reddit is an enormously popular website, but the official design has always needed some reworking. This is even more true of the mobile experience, which didn't have a mobile app until 2016, and even then, not everyone's a fan of it. The site's popularity rose partly thanks to third-party developers filling in the gaps with pre-existing and better mobile apps. Last month, following in the footsteps of Twitter, Reddit suddenly announced it wanted to charge apps for API access, but how much? Would it pull a Twitter and price everything out of the market?

The most popular Reddit app is the iOS app Apollo, which has been running for eight years now and has millions of downloads. Apollo's developer, Christian Selig, has been in meetings with Reddit regarding the cost of the API, and it sounds like the company is using a recent Twitter tactic. Selig says "50 million requests costs $12,000, a figure far more than I ever could have imagined." Twitter, for the record, is charging $42,000 for 50 million tweets. Selig cites the photo site Imgur as a more reasonable pricing scheme, "I pay Imgur (a site similar to Reddit in user base and media) $166 for the same 50 million API calls." Selig estimates it would cost $20 million a year to keep Apollo running.

Apollo and most other third-party apps use Reddit's data but don't show Reddit's ads, so the proliferation of third-party apps costs Reddit money. It's reasonable to expect some money to change hands here, but how much? Selig links to a CNBC report from 2019 that estimated Reddit earns 30 cents a year per user and says Reddit's API pricing would work out to about $2.50 per user per month or $30 a year, which aligns with Imgur's pricing.

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

View the full article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Our picks

    • Wait, Burning Man is going online-only? What does that even look like?
      You could have been forgiven for missing the announcement that actual physical Burning Man has been canceled for this year, if not next. Firstly, the nonprofit Burning Man organization, known affectionately to insiders as the Borg, posted it after 5 p.m. PT Friday. That, even in the COVID-19 era, is the traditional time to push out news when you don't want much media attention. 
      But secondly, you may have missed its cancellation because the Borg is being careful not to use the C-word. The announcement was neutrally titled "The Burning Man Multiverse in 2020." Even as it offers refunds to early ticket buyers, considers layoffs and other belt-tightening measures, and can't even commit to a physical event in 2021, the Borg is making lemonade by focusing on an online-only version of Black Rock City this coming August.    Read more...
      More about Burning Man, Tech, Web Culture, and Live EventsView the full article
      • 0 replies
    • Post in What Are You Listening To?
      Post in What Are You Listening To?
    • Post in What Are You Listening To?
      Post in What Are You Listening To?
    • Post in What Are You Listening To?
      Post in What Are You Listening To?
    • Post in What Are You Listening To?
      Post in What Are You Listening To?
  • Create New...