“Apple Inc. has blocked the plans of the biggest distributor of PC-based video games to extend its reach into iPhones, according to the game distributor, a sign that Apple is serious about protecting its ability to take a cut of digital purchases made inside games on its mobile devices,” Stephen Nellis reports for Reuters.

“Steam, the dominant online store for downloaded games played on Windows PCs, had planned to release a free mobile phone app called Steam Link so that gamers could continue playing on their mobile phones while away from their desktop machines. But Apple has rejected the app, blocking its release, according to a statement from Steam’s parent company, the Bellevue, Washington-based Valve Corp,” Nellis reports. “‘The team here spent many hours on this project and the approval process, so we’re clearly disappointed,’ Valve spokesman Doug Lombardi said in a statement to Reuters. ‘But we hope Apple will reconsider in the future.'”

Nellis reports, “Steam did not give a precise reason for the App Store denials, saying only that Apple cited ‘business conflicts with app guidelines.'”

Read more in the full article here.

“The Steam Link app was originally approved for release on May 7, Valve said, and the company announced it two days later. But the next morning, Apple pulled the plug on the app,” Brian Crecente reports for Variety. “‘The following morning, Apple revoked its approval citing business conflicts with app guidelines that had allegedly not been realized by the original review team,’ Valve said in a statement.”

“The app used the same H.264 real-time encoding tech found in Valve’s physical Steam Link box. With the app, most of a user’s Steam Library of games are playable on their phone in 4K resolution at 60 frames-per-second, but only when they are connected to their home network,” Crecente reports. “[The company’s lead on the technology, Sam] Lantinga told Variety that it’s best if that network is 5 GHz, not 2.4 GHz.”

Read more in the full article here.

“It’s not exactly clear at the moment what the ‘business conflict’ here is, and whether it has anything to do with Apple’s somewhat contentious 30 percent App Store fee for all purchases, in-app or otherwise,” Nick Statt reports for The Verge. “It may perhaps be due to the fact that Steam Link allows an iOS user to access another app store, namely Steam, within Apple’s tightly controlled ecosystem.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: If you want your app in Apple’s App Store, you have to follow Apple’s App Store guidelines. You cannot operate your own app store sales through Apple’s App Store.

From Apple’s App Store Review Guidelines:

3.1.1 In-App Purchase:
If you want to unlock features or functionality within your app, (by way of example: subscriptions, in-game currencies, game levels, access to premium content, or unlocking a full version), you must use in-app purchase. Apps may use in-app purchase currencies to enable customers to “tip” digital content providers in the app. Apps and their metadata may not include buttons, external links, or other calls to action that direct customers to purchasing mechanisms other than in-app purchase.

3.2.2 Unacceptable
(i) Creating an interface for displaying third party apps, extensions, or plug-ins similar to the App Store or as a general-interest collection.

if Steam wants into Apple’s App Store, they’ll have to follow the guidelines to which everybody else in Apple’s App Store conforms.

SEE ALSO:
Steam Link app makes Apple TV interesting to gamers – May 10, 2018