Facebook Criticizes Apple's App Store Policies, Launches Gaming App on iOS Without Games

Facebook today joined Microsoft in condemning Apple's App Store policies, after the company was forced to remove the games feature from its Facebook Gaming app, which launches today on iOS.

facebook gaming app android

Facebook Gaming app on Google Play Store

In a statement given to The Verge, Facebook said it has had its Gaming app rejected multiple times by Apple in recent months, but Apple cited its App Store guidelines to justify the rejections, claiming the primary purpose of the Facebook Gaming app is to play games.

Facebook says it shared usage data with Apple from its Android Facebook Gaming app that showed 95 percent of activity involves watching streams, but it was unable to change Apple's stance on the matter.

Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg said it chose to go ahead with the launch of its app in the ‌App Store‌, but users faced an "inferior" experience compared to Android users.

"Unfortunately, we had to remove gameplay functionality entirely in order to get Apple’s approval on the standalone Facebook Gaming app — meaning iOS users have an inferior experience to those using Android," said Sandberg. "We're staying focused on building communities for the more than 380 million people who play games on Facebook every month — whether Apple allows it in a standalone app or not."

A Facebook spokesperson added that it even appealed the guideline under the new app review process that Apple announced at WWDC, but it did not receive a response.

Apple has come in for heavy criticism from rivals and the gaming industry to loosen its ‌App Store‌ restrictions. Just yesterday, Microsoft said its "Project xCloud" streaming game service that pairs with its Xbox Game Pass won't be available on iPhone and iPad when it launches this September.

The company complained that it no longer had a path to bring its vision of cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to gamers on iOS because Apple "consistently treats gaming apps differently, applying more lenient rules to non-gaming apps even when they include interactive content."

Top Rated Comments

LeeW Avatar
13 months ago
I don't agree with Apple on their restrictions, but I will give them a pass on keeping anything related to FaceBook away from users.
Score: 62 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Geodextro Avatar
13 months ago
Tim Cook last week: ’We Want to Get Every App We Can on the Store, Not Keep Them Off’

(Unless they may outperform the apps/services we make or we otherwise don’t like them)
Score: 36 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Manzanito Avatar
13 months ago
Wow, apple is truly focused on protecting their gaming arcade thing, or whatever the hell it’s called.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Appleman3546 Avatar
13 months ago
First Microsoft, now Facebook... this is embarrassing for Apple that it allows video streaming competitors like Netflix but not video game streaming competitors. Who knew Apple was so afraid to compete with other platforms because their arbitrary policies likely will turn away devs. I can see the Samsung commercials already where Android users play Xbox and Facebook games. Apple’s App Store really has been dealing the heat on all sides, it is probably only a matter of time before browser downloads are mandated or competing apps (or app stores) are required under antitrust regulations (by Europe, US Supreme Court, or congress).
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mrcloaked Avatar
13 months ago
Practice restraint and focus.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jsmith189 Avatar
13 months ago
On a petty note, I'm glad a Facebook app was rejected.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

REC ASA CODE2016 20160601 205816 2745

Elon Musk Reportedly Demanded to Become Apple CEO as Part of Potential Tesla Acquisition [Update: Musk Denies]

Friday July 30, 2021 9:04 am PDT by
Tesla CEO Elon Musk reportedly once demanded that he be made Apple CEO in a brief discussion of a potential acquisition with Apple's current CEO, Tim Cook. The claim comes in a new book titled "Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk and the Bet of the Century," as reviewed by The Los Angeles Times. According to the book, during a 2016 phone call between Musk and Cook that touched on the possibility of ...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 13 to Bring Over a Major Feature From the Apple Watch

Wednesday July 28, 2021 2:21 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will feature an always-on display akin to the Apple Watch Series 5 and Series 6, according to recent reports. In his weekly Power On newsletter, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman, who often reveals accurate insights into Apple's plans, said that the iPhone 13 may feature an Apple Watch-inspired always-on mode. The Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch...
duracell battery bitter coating

Apple Says Don't Buy AirTag Replacement Batteries With Bitter Coating

Wednesday July 28, 2021 11:08 am PDT by
Since AirTags were just released earlier this year and are expected to have a year-long battery life, it may be some time yet before AirTag users need a replacement battery, but when the time comes for a refresh, Apple is warning customers not to buy batteries with a bitter coating. AirTags use coin-shaped CR2032 batteries, which happen to be a size that's easy to swallow. Some battery...
a15 chip

iPhone 13 and Redesigned MacBook Pro Chip Production Hit With Gas Contamination

Friday July 30, 2021 5:44 am PDT by
The most important TSMC factory that manufactures Apple's chips destined for next-generation iPhone and Mac models has been hit by a gas contamination, according to Nikkei Asia. The factory, known as "Fab 18," is TSMC's most advanced chipmaking facility. TSMC is Apple's sole chip supplier, making all of the processors used in every Apple device with a custom silicon chip. Industry...
apple rtp land

Apple Preparing to Occupy 200,000 Square Feet of Temporary Space Ahead of New $1 Billion North Carolina Campus

Thursday July 29, 2021 9:14 am PDT by
Back in April, Apple announced a $430 billion investment over the next five years to create more than 20,000 new jobs as the company continues to expand. One significant piece of that plan is a new engineering and research center in North Carolina where Apple will be investing over $1 billion and hiring at least 3,000 employees. Assemblage of seven properties in Research Triangle Park owned by ...
Apple Leak Feature

Apple Demands Leaker Reveals Sources Under Threat of Being Reported to Police

Wednesday July 28, 2021 6:53 am PDT by
Apple has sent a cease and desist letter to a leaker based in China as part of its continuing attempts to curtail leaks of unreleased products, according to Vice. A Chinese citizen who shared images of stolen Apple prototypes on social media was sent a warning letter from Fangda Partners, Apple's law firm in China, on June 18, 2021. An extract from the letter read:You have disclosed without ...
macos monterey tidbits feature copy

Apple Releases New macOS 12 Monterey Public Beta

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:19 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third public beta of the macOS 12 Monterey beta to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to test the new macOS Monterey software ahead of its public release. The third beta comes two weeks after Apple released the second macOS Monterey public beta. Public beta testers can download the macOS 12 Monterey update from the Software Update section of the System...
iOS 15 General Feature Purple

Apple Releases New Public Betas of iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:16 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third betas of iOS and iPadOS 15 to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to download and test the new updates ahead of their fall release. The third public betas come two weeks after Apple released the second public betas. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS 15 updates over the air after...
nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...