Apple Pulled Off Game Subscription Service from App Store

On Wednesday, Big Fish Games announced that it had become the first app developer to offer games through Apple’s App Store by subscription. Surprisingly, the app has been removed mysteriously from the App Store without any explanation from the Cupertino-based company.

It took quite long for Big Fish games to have their app approved by Apple. Earlier reports suggest that the app would offer subscription-based gaming for $6.99 per month. Dubbed as Play Instantly, the app is supposed to allow subscribers play dozens of iPad games over streaming Wi-Fi for a monthly subscription of $6.99. Some sources even suggested that this was not only the first subscription-based service, but also the first cloud-based service as well. Until the present time, the App Store games have only been offered to individual users with one-time purchase and download policy.

Big Fish Games representative said in an email with an original announcement made on Wednesday saying, “the company worked collaboratively with Apple over several weeks to ensure the service met all their guidelines and that it was handled via [Apple’s] standard submission and review process.” He further added that “Apple wanted to verify that the service we were offering was a good customer experience and that the value proposition warranted a recurring monthly charge.”

Big Fish Games were quite happy with their achievement of getting entrance into the App Store, but it seemed that Apple was not interested in the idea of offering games with monthly subscription on its mobile OS. The app has already pulled off from App Store and the reasons are yet to be known.

The removal of game from the App Store is still ambiguous. We are not even sure whether Apple has any intentions to add game subscription to its App Store in future. According to Apple commentator John Gruber, chances are that app has got an approval unintentionally by an App Store reviewer in violation of App Store available guidelines. However, it is just a speculation and the actual reasons are yet to be disclosed by Apple. The point is both the parties remained in prolonged talks before the app got approval.

Apple could not immediately be available for comment.

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