"In-App Purchasing" (often abbreviated as "IAP") is a term that refers to any transaction that is performed by a Consumer within an application (including Web Apps). IAPs produce "entitlements" that are used to determine what content the consumer has access to.
How to Use
IAPs can be one of four types:
Subscription IAPs produce a temporary entitlement to access any content that is currently a member of the subscription. Subscriptions durations can be 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, or 12 months ("annual" subscriptions).
When a consumer purchases a subscription, they are not gaining an entitlement to any specific piece of content. The entitlement is to the subscription itself, which provides temporary access to any content that is currently contained within the subscription.
Purchase IAPs produce a permanent entitlement to access a specific piece of content. Although the availability of the content may change over time (streaming services do not typically guarantee that all content will be available in perpetuity after a purchase), if the content is available on the platform then a purchase entitlement will allow the Consumer who made the purchase to access it.
Rental IAPs produce a temporary entitlement to access a specific piece of content. Once purchased, the Consumer has a specific amount of time to begin watching the content, and a specific amount of time thereafter to complete watching the content before their viewing window expires. The initial start time and viewing window duration are configurable on a per-tier basis.
Event IAPs (also known as "Pay-per-view" or PPV events) produce a permanent entitlement, however the viewing period for the entitlement is limited to the start and stop time of the associated Event. This type of entitlement is often referred to as a "ticketed" entitlement.