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Facebook Gaming Finally Clears Apple Hurdle, Arriving in App Store

  • August 07, 2020

Games are the largest source of revenue for Apple on the App Store, and many tech executives have concluded that Apple blocks game services that could compete with its own products and sales.

Apple, without directly addressing Facebook Gaming, said its App Store policies were designed to protect consumers. It added that it had allowed other apps that included games into the App Store.

The sparring is a reminder of where the power lies in Silicon Valley. While Facebook runs the world’s largest social network and owns many popular apps such as Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp, Apple controls their distribution through its App Store. That makes Facebook dependent on Apple to reach many of its users.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, has expressed consternation about the power that Apple holds, albeit obliquely. In testimony to Congress last week about Facebook’s rivals, he said, “Some are upstarts, but others are gatekeepers with the power to decide if we can even release our apps in their app stores to compete with them.”

In June, the European Commission, the executive body of the European Union, said it had opened a formal antitrust investigation into Apple’s App Store terms, spurred by a complaint from Spotify, the music-streaming service. Other app developers, such as Basecamp, have also scuffled with Apple over its App Store rules.

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