Apple App Store revises cloud gaming TOS, but it’s still ‘bad’


Microsoft has now responded to the Apple App Store’s recent ruling on game streaming. The tech company says the details are “bad” for customers.

In recent months, Apple banned the addition of cloud gaming platforms like xCloud. They previously barred the apps from the Apple App Store out of security concerns. Now, the company announced revisions regarding their service.

Even then, Microsoft cites that these revisions are bare, if not lacking. They note that while the changes allow the streaming services, the caveats are impossible.

App Store TOS allows cloud streaming under serious conditions

The new Apple Terms of Service note that each game should still download straight from the App Store. Such a ruling is both weird and anti-consumer.

“Games offered in a streaming game service subscription must be downloaded directly from the App Store, must be designed to avoid duplicate payment by a subscriber, and should not disadvantage non-subscriber customers,” said Apple’s brand new TOS.

What this means for the streaming services is they act only as a catalog app. They will help users sign up for the service and see what’s available on both xCloud and Stadia. Even then, every game should be available on the App Store, which is a big undertaking.

At the same time, the ruling defeats the entire purpose of cloud streaming. In cloud streaming, gamers can play in a “Games as a Service” model, much like how Netflix does movies. No prior download should happen, as the entire point is to stream straight into the device.

Services like xCloud and Stadia also offer hundreds upon hundreds of games. Registration, cataloging, and creating individual App Store pages is impossible.

Microsoft calls the new TOS “bad” for customers.

Microsoft has the same line of thinking in regards to the new Apple App Store TOS. In an interview, they detailed that the new TOS “remains a bad experience for customers.”

“This remains a bad experience for customers,” says Microsoft through a spokesperson. “Gamers want to jump directly into a game from their curated catalog within one app just like they do with movies or songs, and not be forced to download over 100 apps to play individual games from the cloud.

We’re committed to putting gamers at the center of everything we do, and providing a great experience is core to that mission.”

Last month, Microsoft ruled out iOS for their upcoming xCloud services because the services were against Apple’s ruling. On another turf, Apple is facing similar opposition through the Epic Games lawsuit.

While the Apple App Store updated its terms, it seems this is a one-sided approach. The updates are still restrictive to an impossible degree. Pundits can say that the changes have zero value to the customers waiting for game streaming.

Featured image courtesy of Microsoft/Youtube Screenshot

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