updated 05:03 pm EDT, Wed June 20, 2012
Monthly fees being tested by Zynga before July rollout
Facebook is giving up on its Credits system and moving to local currencies, the social network has announced. The change is an effort to make payments simpler for end users. The company is moreover adding the ability for Facebook apps to start charging for subscriptions, beginning later in the summer. The move is seen as a way for Facebook increase its revenues outside of ads.
Credits were introduced in 2009 as a single virtual currency for all apps on the network. As most games on Facebook now have their own virtual currencies, the need for a platform-wide currency has dwindled. Payments to games will now be made in currencies local to a user, and any existing credits on customer accounts will be reverted.
Subscription support will begin in July. Marketed to developers as a way of establishing a recurring revenue stream and offering "premium experiences," subscriptions are currently being tested by Kixeye and Zynga ahead of the full rollout. The potential extra revenue is sure to make Facebook seem more favorable to investors following a rocky IPO, since the network will take a 30 percent cut from transactions.