Like Google, Apple keeps updating its policies and rules. The latest updates target iOS developers and app consumers like you and me. Apple wants to assure users that the new rules are meant to better its services. However, they will hit iPhone and iPad users hard. Below is an overview of the rules and the changes they bring.
This is not a new rule in Apple’s iOS guidelines but it has been improved to include content that was not previously listed. Developers are not allowed to publish apps with mean-spirited or discriminatory content of any kind.
Developers can also not use realistic images of people or animals getting killed whether as part of the gameplay or for any other reason. When it comes to portraying enemies in a game, developers are also prohibiting as portraying members of a single race, religion or ethnicity as being the enemy.
Apple also bans the uses of explicit images and videos meant to arouse human emotions. Glamorizing weapon neglect and abuse of animals are also other items added to Apple’s list of things developers can’t include in iOS apps.
Apple continues to allow in-app purchases through its latest policy updates. There are a few changes though. In-app currencies purchased using real money cannot expire. This is good news for all gamers out there. Whether you lose your phone or choose not to play a game for a while, you won’t lose play credits anymore.
Apple also has new rules for loot boxes, a trend-setting change that may define how game developers approach loot boxes henceforth. For starters, any game selling loot boxes will also be required to include the odds of acquiring each item.
New games are also not allowed to offer loot boxes and other for-purchase items immediately. They will be required to offer a free trial for all their services first before locking what they intend to sell later on. Apple clearly had players’ interests in mind when making this rule. Many are times when fans are forced to purchase in-game items without being allowed to test them for free.
Gaming and Rules
Last year, Apple introduced a controversial ban on free gaming apps on its store. The giant American company would no longer accept apps from individual developers, locking out thousands of free casino apps.
This year, Apple is targeting mobile firms with non-native app content. With the new rules, Apple prohibits non native apps from offering their services to iPhone and iPad users.
Lotteries and sweepstakes will also have to adhere to new laws. Developers can no longer publish apps they don’t sponsor. Each app must also include all rules of the game and categorically state that Apple is not involved in the business.
Protecting Copyright Rules
With the new rules, Apple wants everyone to be original. It’s about time anyway. There are so many copycat apps and Apple has vowed to remove all of them. There are guidelines on how the company will go about this.
Apps with a striking resemblance of similar apps on the Apple Store will be removed immediately. Doing the bare minimum is no longer a prerequisite for having your app launched on Apple Store also. For example, AR apps without rich content and great AR experiences won’t be allowed.
Apple will also require developers to disclose the size of additional files users may have to deal with. This was previously a huge problem on both Google and Apple Stores. Google is yet to deal with the issue.
Data Protection Laws
Added to Apple’s list of legal adherence requirements is a consent icon for users to confirm whether they want their age data to be collected or not. Additionally, developers must also offer a clear method for users to withdraw permissions they had already granted.
Except for rare cases, apps will no longer demand users to create an account before accessing their services. Developers that break any of Apple’s data privacy rules will be suspended from the company’s developers’ program.
Apple has new rules for iOS developers and app users. They are clear and detailed for everyone to understand. Most of the rules will hit developers harder than app users. However, iPhone and iPad owners should also prepare for new changes in most of their favorite apps.