Apple has announced that gaming companies will have until June to switch their HTML5 games to iOS native games. In the middle of last year, Apple tightened the guidelines for its app store and announced that it would remove all non iOS gaming apps.
Initially, the developers had until September to convert, then the deadline was extended to March. The new deadline is June 30th. Despite the extension of the deadline and although the providers have already had 13 months, it is not clear whether all providers will succeed in complying with the new guidelines with their gaming apps.
In June, the digital agency Degree 53 found that sports betting apps from providers such as Ladbrokes, Unibet and bet365 had not yet been able to optimally develop their Apple apps. Deficiencies were found, particularly in terms of functionality and user experience, and it was not yet to be expected that the providers would be able to implement the required Apple guidelines by March.
Apple has come under criticism because gamers who use iPhone to search for addiction counseling services are said to be shown gambling ads.
As reported by the British daily Daily Mail on Monday, players who search in the App Store under the keywords “game stop” or “gambling block” should see gambling apps such as Ladbrokes Casino or 888 Casino. Apps that could be used to block gambling transactions or include addiction advice services would only appear further down in the list.
This would be contrary to the rules of the UK Gambling Commission, according to which gambling advertising must be carried out in a socially responsible manner. However, this type of gambling advertising targets the “weakest” when they try to stop playing.
Labor MP Carolyn Harris commented:
“The sector has to face up to reality and regulators have to stop putting their hands on their lap because when this pandemic is over, these companies will be held responsible for the damage done to vulnerable players.”
Gambling companies, on the other hand, argue that they use technology to exclude gamblers at risk, including minors, from gambling advertising. Nevertheless, Apple’s search algorithm leads them directly to the gambling apps.
Ladbrokes commented that he had contacted Apple. So it should be clarified how it could come about. The gambling advertisement should then be removed immediately.
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