Facebook just can’t get its Gaming app approved by Apple.
Facebook announced its gaming service in April, but a New York Times report today says that Apple has rejected Facebook Gaming five times since February.
Executives and engineers from Facebook’s games division submitted their new app, Facebook Gaming, to Apple last month for approval to offer it in the iPhone maker’s App Store.
Apple considered Facebook’s application for a few weeks. This month, it delivered its verdict: denied.
The Facebook team was not surprised. It wasn’t the first time Apple had said no to the Facebook Gaming app. Or the second. Or even the third.
Since February, Apple has rejected at least five versions of Facebook Gaming, according to three people with knowledge of the companies, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the details are confidential. Each time, the people said, Apple cited its rules that prohibit apps with the “main purpose” of distributing casual games.
The iPhone maker says that the app breaks the App Store rule that prohibits apps whose main aim is to distribute games. Even after Facebook changed the app’s design each time, Apple continued to reject the app for the same reason of distributing games (Rule 4.7 of the App Store).
As the report notes, Facebook Gaming is likely being hurt by the fact it could be seen to directly compete with Apple’s own sale of games on the App Store, as well as Apple Arcade. Apple’s move might be seen as anti-competitive by many as the company has been at the center of controversies for rejecting apps and games in an inconsistent way.
Facebook’s Gaming app is a place where gamers can share live streaming videos, watch game videos, engage with one another, and even play some simple games. The app is currently available on Google’s Play Store.