September 28, 2020

Apple Loosens App Store Rules That Hurt Streaming Games, Classes

(Bloomberg) — Apple Inc. adjusted its App Store review guidelines to loosen restrictions on iPhone and iPad games that stream directly from the internet and in-app purchase rules that have frustrated developers.

The changes mean Apple will approve games that stream from the web, versus from content installed on a device, for the first time. That reverses a rule that frustrated companies including Microsoft Corp.

Read more: Apple’s App Store Rules Keep Rival Gaming Services Off IPhones

The new rules will still require games to be submitted individually. That means companies still won’t be able to launch all-you-can-eat streaming game services on Apple’s platform.

However, these services can now offer a catalog that directs users to other streaming games from the same developer. But that catalog must point players to the App Store to download those other games individually.

Apple is also no longer imposing its in-app purchase requirements on online teaching apps, such as tutoring or workout offerings. This only applies to classes that are between two people. Some developers, including Facebook Inc., were frustrated that they had to give Apple 30% of class revenue given the pandemic has moved most learning online.

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