Apple rejects Steam Link app from App Store, cites breach of guidelines

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 24
Gamers looking forward to playing their library of Steam games on an iPhone or iPad via the hotly anticipated Steam Link app will have to wait a bit longer, as Apple rejected the title from distribution through the App Store earlier in May.




According to a statement Steam developer Valve provided to AppleInsider, Apple approved Steam Link on May 7, but revoked that approval three days later citing "business conflicts with app guidelines" that went unrecognized by its original review team.

While details of the rejection have yet to be made public, Apple apparently takes issue with the app's core functionality. Valve in an appeal explained Steam Link operates as a LAN-based remote desktop, noting there are many titles currently on the App Store that boast similar functionality.

Apple denied the appeal, leaving Valve's app blocked from wide availability.

"The team here spent many hours on this project and the approval process, so we're clearly disappointed. But we hope Apple will reconsider in the future," Valve said.

Announced earlier this month, Steam Link allows users to stream Steam games from a PC or Mac to iOS-based devices, including iPhone, iPad and Apple TV, over a wired or wireless internet connection.

To accomplish the task, the app ferries video from a computer to an iOS client device via a wired ethernet connection or 5GHz Wi-Fi network, while commands from the Steam Controller, MFI controllers and other hardware are relayed back to the host PC or Mac.

AppleInsider was able to take a closer look at a beta version of the app last week and discovered the system works largely as advertised. We ran into a few hiccups, mostly related to controller issues, but found the app ran smoothly, delivering an acceptable PC-to-mobile experience for a variety of games including "Rocket League," "Portal 2" and "Team Fortress 2."



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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 55
    Apple hates gamers. They have for decades. You should be use to disappointment by now.
    elijahgjSnively[Deleted User]singularity
  • Reply 2 of 55
    emoelleremoeller Posts: 400member
    I suspect that Apple rejected this because games could/would bypass the Apple App store.   I hope I am incorrect on this assumption as Apple IMHO would be treading on thin ice legally with such a restriction.  
    elijahgjbdragon[Deleted User]singularity
  • Reply 3 of 55
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 689member
    emoeller said:
    I suspect that Apple rejected this because games could/would bypass the Apple App store.   I hope I am incorrect on this assumption as Apple IMHO would be treading on thin ice legally with such a restriction.  
    I think this is pretty much it. Technically this is just fast VNC, but it's quite obvious Apple's worried the "real" Steam games will outcompete the mobile ones, especially on AppleTV. This is most definitely anticompetitive practise though, and at some point someone's going to sue Apple over it.  Especially when developers spend thousands on an app or game, only for it to get rejected. It'd be like cars only accepting Ford brand fuel or a Panasonic TV only displaying Panasonic-approved TV shows. It's not fair, and does not reflect well on Apple at all.

    Since this was approved at first and then rejected, someone higher up at Apple must have got involved. Presumably Cook's beancounting decided that since this didn't add up directly to increased profit, it was axed. Unfortunately this kind of thing reduces the enjoyment of using Apple's platforms, and makes me reconsider a new AppleTV vs something more open.
    edited May 24 bonobobcroprmuthuk_vanalingamavon b7
  • Reply 4 of 55
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,484member
    I think this one will cause a shitstorm. I wonder how high up it was rejected? Schiller? Cue? Cook? 
    elijahg[Deleted User]singularitymuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 5 of 55
    emoeller said:
    I suspect that Apple rejected this because games could/would bypass the Apple App store.   I hope I am incorrect on this assumption as Apple IMHO would be treading on thin ice legally with such a restriction.  
    Apple specifically allows this practice, but there are conditions for how it is implemented. (Which are pretty well established by now.)

    It's likely more to do with ferrying your data around in an inappropriate way.
    lolliverSpamSandwichwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 55
    For those whining, go use Android!
    edited May 24 elijahgnunzyCraingry kuduSoliSpamSandwichlkrupp
  • Reply 7 of 55
    supadav03supadav03 Posts: 404member
    Surprised how many people think Tim Cook personally rejected this app, lol. Something tells me the CEO of the richest tech company in the world isn’t taking time to reject apps himself. 

    On to the article. Very disappointed myself. Was hoping the Apple TV would finally stop being useless for gaming. Think this may have to do with the fact that purchases could be made via the app without Apple getting a cut since it’s jusy acting as remote access point for your PC. They either need to let Apple get their cut or remove the functionality to buy/rent from the app. 
    SpamSandwichnumenorean
  • Reply 8 of 55
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 689member
    emoeller said:
    I suspect that Apple rejected this because games could/would bypass the Apple App store.   I hope I am incorrect on this assumption as Apple IMHO would be treading on thin ice legally with such a restriction.  
    Apple specifically allows this practice, but there are conditions for how it is implemented. (Which are pretty well established by now.)

    It's likely more to do with ferrying your data around in an inappropriate way.
    It requires no more data than the Steam Mobile app. In any case if that was true, they'd say that instead of "business conflicts". Couldn't be less ambiguous if they tried.


    For those whining, go you Android!
    Yep good idea. If everyone chose that solution to every Apple problem, there'd rapidly be no-one left.
    edited May 24 canukstorm[Deleted User]singularitymuthuk_vanalingamavon b7gatorguy
  • Reply 9 of 55
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    If they don't follow Apple's rules, then this is what happens. Apple doesn't have to carry anything it doesn't like. Steam should have thought about that first.
    racerhomie3SpamSandwich
  • Reply 10 of 55
    canukstormcanukstorm Posts: 1,678member
    I think this one will cause a shitstorm. I wonder how high up it was rejected? Schiller? Cue? Cook? 
    Already is.  And for the right reason.
    [Deleted User]elijahg
  • Reply 11 of 55
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 776member
    elijahg said:
    emoeller said:
    I suspect that Apple rejected this because games could/would bypass the Apple App store.   I hope I am incorrect on this assumption as Apple IMHO would be treading on thin ice legally with such a restriction.  
    Apple specifically allows this practice, but there are conditions for how it is implemented. (Which are pretty well established by now.)

    It's likely more to do with ferrying your data around in an inappropriate way.
    It requires no more data than the Steam Mobile app. In any case if that was true, they'd say that instead of "business conflicts". Couldn't be less ambiguous if they tried.


    For those whining, go you Android!
    Yep good idea. If everyone chose that solution to every Apple problem, there'd rapidly be no-one left.
    Gamers are few my friend. There are plenty of games on iOS already.
    edited May 24
  • Reply 12 of 55
    Lots of straight out fanboy or hater comments around. I feel the truth is in some middle ground.

    So, I won’t switch my Apple devices for some POS, but yeah... really dick move Apple!
  • Reply 13 of 55
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,778member
    It's a bit weird since it only streams from a Mac you already have Steam running on.  It's not a portal to the Steam Store in of itself is it?
    edited May 24 watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 55
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,639member
    Apple hates gamers. They have for decades. You should be use to disappointment by now.
    I don't think it really has anything to do with gamers, but rather just an app that happened to be about gaming that failed to meet Apple's guidelines. This doesn't mean its permanently off the store forever...they just need to fix it to meet the guidelines. Sometimes its just a matter of the developer(s) misunderstanding what they can and cannot do. 

    As far as gaming goes...I think Apple is quite interested in gaming on iOS. Its one of the best newer platforms for gaming in quite a while. 
    racerhomie3kuduwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 55
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 776member
    Apple hates gamers. They have for decades. You should be use to disappointment by now.
    Why stop there? Go sell your ‘game hating ‘ Apple products & buy top of the line junk from Dell, and Samsung.
    edited May 24
  • Reply 16 of 55
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 776member
    I think this one will cause a shitstorm. I wonder how high up it was rejected? Schiller? Cue? Cook? 
    The high ups do not care about tiny stuff like this. The guidelines are there for a reason.
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 17 of 55
    With webGL becoming so darn good (and Unity exporting to WebGL finally getting somewhere) I can’t wait for the day where it’s going to be more fair to developers.
    Stupid 30% tax 
  • Reply 18 of 55
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 776member
    Lots of straight out fanboy or hater comments around. I feel the truth is in some middle ground.

    So, I won’t switch my Apple devices for some POS, but yeah... really dick move Apple!
    They did not follow App Store guidelines. No virtual ‘store’ for gameplay on iOS .I think the same reason, Touch Arcade app was not updated.
    Plus ,they made their ‘Steam controller’ work with unauthorized APIs . They registered them as keyboard & mouse input. Only MFi certified controllers are officially supported.
    edited May 24 SpamSandwich
  • Reply 19 of 55
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 776member
    With webGL becoming so darn good (and Unity exporting to WebGL finally getting somewhere) I can’t wait for the day where it’s going to be more fair to developers.
    Stupid 30% tax 
    Keep on dreaming pal. Proton still sucks.
  • Reply 20 of 55
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,484member
    I think this one will cause a shitstorm. I wonder how high up it was rejected? Schiller? Cue? Cook? 
    The high ups do not care about tiny stuff like this. The guidelines are there for a reason.
    Believe me high ups at Apple know all about this. There was a reason it was approved and then rejected. If this was a simple case of Valve not following developer guidelines they would have been told what to fix and resubmitted. 

    Stephen Nellis (@StephenNellis)
    A small update in the conflict between @steam_games and Apple: Steam now confirms that they had disabled the ability to make purchases in the iOS app. Apple still has not commented on why they rejected Steam's app.
    edited May 24 racerhomie3elijahg
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