Apple Freezing Updates for Many iOS Games on China App Store
Apple has frozen updates for thousands of iOS mobile games on the App Store in China, due to these apps lacking an official license from Chinese regulators (via Financial Times). Previously in February, Apple gave app developers a June 30 deadline to prove they had a license for their games.
Now that it's July, Apple said that developers would not be able to update their games without a license. The move is said to come from "increasing government pressure" on Apple to comply with local regulations, which have been in place since 2016.
“No one is entirely clear how Apple managed to avoid enforcing the 2016 licensing rule for so long. But considering the US-China trade war began heating up earlier this year, the timing is suspicious,” said Todd Kuhns, marketing manager for the consultancy group App in China, which estimated that the move could cost Apple up to $879m in lost sales.
In total, Apple is estimated to host around 60,000 gaming apps in China that are paid downloads or include in-app purchases. Among that amount, China's regulators have issues just over 43,000 licenses since 2010, while in 2019 about 1,570 licenses were granted to developers.
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