Updated: Apple confirms you can no longer re-download bought games since removed from the App Store

Policy shift

Updated: Apple confirms you can no longer re-download bought games since removed from the App Store

[Updated: In an interesting turn of events, it appears that the Apple PR person either confirmed something that was incorrect, or that Apple has since changed the policy.]

Previously, if a game or app was removed from the App Store by its creator, those who had previously purchased or downloaded it would retain the right to re-download it via purchase history.

However, speaking to Pocket Gamer, an Apple UK spokesperson has confirmed that this is no longer the case. 

Going, going, gone

Previously thought of as a potential iOS 9 bug, it now appears that thanks to an official change in policy, games pulled from the App Store are now also being removed from users' purchase history, meaning that they're completely inaccessible, even to paying customers.

This becomes a particularly thorny issue when it comes to premium games, calling into question the extent to which a user has ownership of the digital products they have paid for on Apple's store.

"If [developers] remove their apps from the store, they cannot be redownloaded until the app has been resubmitted to the App Store," said the spokesperson.

This essentially means that, bar the nigh-impossible task of keeping all the apps and games you own on your device at all times, iPhone and iPad users now have no protection against chunks of their game collection disappearing overnight.

And, for developers, it attaches a whole lot more responsibility to the decision to pull your game, something many have been doing due to the cost of ongoing support.

[Source: Pocket Gamer]


Features Editor

Matt is really bad at playing games, but hopefully a little better at writing about them. He's Features Editor for, and has also written for lesser publications such as IGN, VICE, and Paste Magazine.


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