Apple has revised its App Store guidelines to allow game streaming services such as Google Stadia and Microsoft's xCloud to operate through the App Store.
This initially seems like a win for streaming platforms, but there is a major catch. Games must be added to the App Store individually, and therefore go through the same review process as other games, including for updates.
Catalogue apps will be available, so that players can browse games outside of the App Store and find them all in one place. However, download links for these games must point to the individual App Store page, and players must download the games through the App Store.
A bad experience
Microsoft has hit back at the new decision, saying in a statement to The Verge that "this remains a bad experience for customers. 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."
The change in Apple's view on streaming games comes just over a month after it confirmed that such services violated its policies at the time.
Microsoft's xCloud is free to all users of its Game Pass Ultimate service. The streaming platform is set to go into open beta on September 15th 2020.