Microsoft today announced the end of the beta version of The Xbox Project xCloud for iOS devices and forgo running Project xCloud on the Apple App Store. Project xCloud is Microsoft’s first cloud gaming platform in 2018. The service allows players to use mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablets for $15 a month and run more than 100 Xbox One games from a cloud server without using an Xbox One console or Win10 PC device.
Over the past few months, Microsoft’s Xbox division has been testing the iOS version of the software on TestFlight and plans to fully open the service on September 15 this year.
Unfortunately, Microsoft has dropped its shelves and ended xCloud’s iOS beta in TestFlight on September 11 because of the Apple App Store review rules.
Microsoft will continue to support the Xbox Game Pass on the Android platform and its accompanying xCloud cloud game feature, and plans to launch it to the public next month, The Verge reported.
Microsoft issued a statement condemning the App Store’s unfair treatment.
On the morning of August 7, Beijing time, Microsoft issued a media statement denouncing Apple’s strict developer restrictions and its stance on cloud gaming apps, saying that Apple treats gaming apps differently and applies looser rules to non-gaming apps.
“Apple is the only universal platform that refuses to allow consumers to subscribe to games such as Microsoft Cloud Games and Xbox Game Pass,” Microsoft said.
In a statement, Microsoft noted that all games available in the Xbox Game Pass catalog are rated by independent industry rating agencies such as ESRB and regional equivalents. Microsoft believes it can find a way to put Apple on the shelves, including through third-party content evaluation.
“The beta version of our iOS Project xCloud Preview app has expired. Unfortunately, there’s no way we can bring The Xbox Game Pass Ultimate’s cloud game vision to gamers on iOS through the Apple App Store.
Apple is the only universal platform that refuses consumers to use subscription services such as cloud games and Xbox Game Pass. Moreover, it always treats game applications differently, applying looser rules to non-gaming apps, even if they contain interactive content.
All games available in the Xbox Game Pass catalog are rated by independent industry rating agencies such as ESRB and regional equivalents. We are committed to finding a way to bring Xbox Game Pass Ultimate’s cloud games to the iOS platform.
We believe that customers should be at the heart of the gaming experience, and wherever they are, they want to play, connect and share games anywhere. Microsoft said in a statement.
Facebook “followed the lead” in condemning it.
Following Microsoft, Facebook has publicly condemned Apple’s App Store policy for failing to feature facebook’s built-in features.
At around 7 p.m. Beijing time on August 7, Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, issued a statement to the New York Times and other media, accusing Apple of repeatedly denying the Facebook Gaming app a built-in independent game feature for months, forcing the company to abandon it altogether and remove it from iOS.
“In order to gain Apple’s approval for the standalone Facebook Gaming app, we have to completely remove the game feature, which means that the iOS user experience is less than the Android platform.” Facebook said in a statement.
Facebook Gaming is a live game video platform, similar to Twitch. On Android Mobile, the app has many mini games built into the Facebook Instant Games platform that run independently in a way similar to WeChat games, but Apple says the feature is not allowed online.
Facebook said Apple cited app Store Review Guide 4.7 to justify the rejection, claiming that the main purpose of the Facebook Gaming app was to play games, not watch videos. Facebook, citing data from platform users, responded to Apple, saying that 95 percent of users watch video streams and are not a game-type product. But Apple did not respond, nor did it put the standalone app on the shelves.
(Note: Apple’s App Store Review Guide 4.7 means that HTML5 games distributed in the app may not provide access to real money games, gaming or charitable donations, nor do they support digital commerce.) This feature applies only to code embedded in binary files and using Apple audits. )
This isn’t the first time Facebook has faced the challenge of racking up the App Store. Including Facebook and Messenger’s standalone software, iOS also removed the instant Games feature, a small game built into Android devices.
Vivek Sharma, Facebook’s vice president of gaming, told The Verge, “This is a common pain for the entire gaming industry, and (Apple’s approach) ultimately hurts players and developers and seriously hinders innovation in mobile devices in other types of formats, such as cloud games.” “
Apple responds: It’s designed to protect consumers.
Earlier today, Apple responded by admitting that it did not allow cloud gaming services such as Microsoft’s xCloud platform and Google’s Stadia platform to log into the App Store.
Apple also said the App Store can’t review every game through Xbox Game Pass, so the service isn’t available in the App Store.
“The Creation of the App Store is a secure and secure place for customers to discover and download applications, and a huge opportunity for all developers.
Before entering our store, all applications must be reviewed in accordance with the same set of guidelines designed to protect customers and provide a level playing field for developers.
Our customers enjoy the great apps and games that millions of developers offer, and game services can be available in the App Store as long as they follow the same set of guidelines that apply to all developers. An Apple spokesman told the media.
Apple stressed that the restrictions are designed to protect consumers and level the playing field for developers.
While Microsoft, Facebook and Apple are the tech giants, Apple controls all iOS and Mac software on and stay with its powerful App Store ecosystem. Such behavior is a headache for tech giants such as Facebook and Microsoft: on the one hand, they need to attract more users by relying on Apple’s ecology, and on the other hand, they will have to work hard to comply with the various “bullying clauses” in Apple’s App Store review rules.
Notably, in June, the European Commission announced an antitrust investigation into Apple’s Apple Pay and App Store. Apple could face billions of dollars in fines if the European Union rules out a monopoly.