Game streaming is pitched as criticism particularly from Microsoft's Xbox gaming group and Fortnite maker Epic Games, it's ., a nirvana-like union of powerful computer servers, super fast networks. It can , allowing anyone to play visually complex and demanding video games on a low-power device, using technology similar to watching movies on Netflix. But Apple says game streaming needs to follow its rules if it's going to be made available on its App Store. And now, after
Apple Fellow Phil Schiller, who led the company's worldwide marketing for three decades before being named, testified in an Oakland, California, courtroom Monday that his company's approach is consistent and thoughtful, despite criticism.
Apple requires game-streaming services to submit individual apps to its App Store for review, even if they're part of a streaming catalog of hundreds of titles. The reason, he said, is that when people look for a game in the App Store, Apple wants to provide an age rating, parental controls, a product page and privacy policies to users in the same way it does for other apps on its store, regardless of how it's delivered.
"As a store, we want to provide that information to our users," he said. Microsoft has vociferously disagreed in the past, saying the process creates a bad experience for users searching through its catalog of games. The company didn't immediately respond to a request for comment on Schiller's latest statements.
Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers also focused on a frequent argument against Apple, asking why the company treats game streaming differently than Netflix.
Schiller's defense underscores the complexity of the rules Apple's constructed around its App Store and how even a federal court judge struggles to understand them sometimes. Apple'sand the guideline rules it's . And since the App Store is the only way to install apps on the iPhone, developers have to play by Apple's rules.
Fortnite maker Epic isto Apple's approach, potentially .
In the meantime though, Schiller sees a distinction between a movie-streaming app and a game-streaming service. "The App Store is not a movie store," he added. "It isn't about movies. It's an apps and games store. And so when you bring in games in a different way, that no longer works as designed in the game store."