App Store starts removing old apps for iPhone and iPad

Apple may have started deleting apps that no longer receive updates from the iOS Store. The company could have emailed the developers in this category with the takedown notice. According to the statement, Apple will exclude all software from App Store that has not been updated “in a long period of time”.

Whoever is on the company’s exclusion list will only have 30 days to make any improvement in the software. The Cupertino giant explains what will happen if the developer does not release an update: the removal of the default iPhone and iPad store.

Developer Kosta Eleftheriou, creator of the FlickType keyboard for the Apple Watch, says the company has disabled a version of the app aimed at people with visual impairments because it hasn’t been updated in two years. Another app of yours, called Pocket God, will also be at risk because the last update was in 2015.

Developer Emilia Lazer-Walker reports that Apple is removing some of its old games from the App Store. Several other developers share the same experience, with complaints that the company only sent the notification after the app was deleted from the store.

Many developers can be affected

This notice worried a lot of people, because not every developer tends to constantly release improvements to the software. There are cases of simpler programs that actually do their normal job, without the need for constant patches or additions.

It is likely that this procedure will mainly affect offline games, because such titles are usually not updated frequently. If the game runs flawlessly, with no bugs or compatibility issues, why does the game creator need to release monthly updates?

It is worth noting that this procedure will only affect the sale of apps in the Store, so anyone who has it installed on their phone will not be affected. Purchases and sales of features in the software will remain unchanged. The problem is that if someone deletes the program, it will lose access permanently, since it will not be possible to download it again.

Apple says it’s necessary

The App Store has a section dedicated to explaining why it has adopted this user experience measure. According to the responsible team, this is an ongoing review process, where anything that no longer works as intended, follows current review guidelines, or is out of date that needs to be blocked, does not follow.

In 2016, the iPhone creator said it would remove abandoned apps from the App Store to clean up the Store. At this point, the developers only had 30 days to update the software before removing it permanently. It is unclear whether this has continued since then or whether the practice has now resumed with a wider sweep.

The main difficulty, according to the developers, is not to characterize what could be an “outdated” application. It is unknown if this is related to the update date or if it is a feature compatibility requirement of the latest iOS version. For independent developers, it is very difficult to need to release constant patches and improvements to programs that are already doing their part.

The Google Play Store also has a similar policy to the competitor, but it is more direct when determining the necessary requirements: “Have an API level compatible with up to two years of the latest major version of Android”. Google gave everyone until November 1, 2022, a deadline for everyone to make this fix, but offered an option to request an additional six-month extension to comply.

Source: The Verge, Apple

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