Ex-App Store head says Apple Arcade violates Apple’s own policies

A previous head of the App Store told the US House of Representatives that Apple rejects subscription game services because they compete with Apple Arcade.

As the dispute between Apple and Epic Games continues, a former App Store manager has claimed that Apple does reject apps that compete with its own services. Questioned by the US House of Representatives in its antitrust investigation, Philip Shoemaker said that the App Store had been used to protect Apple’s interests.

“[Apple] was not being honest,” he said when asked about the company’s claim that it treats all developers the same. Calling the App Store rules both “arbitrary” and “arguable,” he said that, “Apple has struggled with using the App Store as a weapon against competitors.”

“Apple has complete and unprecedented power over their customers’ devices,” he continued. “The decisions they make with regards to third-party apps needs to be above reproach, and currently

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Apple Arcade violates the same App Store policies that are keeping Xbox Game Pass and Google Stadia off of iOS, says former App Store leader



graphical user interface, application: Apple CEO Tim Cook. AP


© AP
Apple CEO Tim Cook. AP

  • Apple’s iPhone and iPad App Store doesn’t allow subscription-based gaming services like Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass and Google’s Stadia. 
  • The reason, according to former Apple App Store director Phil Shoemaker, is because “apps that compete against Apple’s services have a track record of problems getting through the App Store’s review process,” a new House antitrust report said. 
  • Shoemaker pointed to Apple Arcade, Apple’s subscription-based gaming service, as a primary reason other game subscription services aren’t available for iPhone and iPad users. 
  • “Apple’s gaming service, Apple Arcade, is a type of app that was ‘consistently disallowed from the store,’ when offered by third-party developers,” the report said, “but Apple allowed its own app in the store ‘even though it violates existing [App Store] guidelines.’”
  • Apple maintains that any game on a subscription service is subject to the same App Store approval process that an
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