UK launches investigation into Apple over cloud gaming woes

Apple App Store Awards 2021 Hero
Apple App Store Awards 2021 Hero (Image credit: Apple)

The United Kingdom has officially launched an investigation into Apple over its dominance over the browser and cloud gaming experience on the iPhone.

In a press release, the UK Competition and Markets Authority announced that it has formally begun an investigation into both Apple and Google. The investigation will specifically focus on mobile browsers and cloud gaming and the two tech giants' control over the experience with both.

Sarah Cardell, interim Chief Executive of the CMA, said that "we want to make sure that UK consumers get the best new mobile data services, and that UK developers can invest in innovative new apps."

It's all about getting an Xbox Cloud Gaming app

The press release says that "97% of all mobile web browsing in the UK in 2021 happens on browsers powered by either Apple’s or Google’s browser engine, so any restrictions on these engines can have a major impact on users’ experiences."

Cardell echoed many of the arguments made against Apple's App Store rules, saying that "many UK businesses and web developers tell us they feel that they are being held back by restrictions set by Apple and Google. When the new Digital Markets regime is in place, it’s likely to address these sorts of issues. In the meantime, we are using our existing powers to tackle problems where we can. We plan to investigate whether the concerns we have heard are justified and, if so, identify steps to improve competition and innovation in these sectors."

Some major developers like Xbox, Stadia, and Nvidia have been unable to run cloud gaming apps on the App Store so far due to Apple's App Store rules. It's been a major obstacle for gamers who have had to resort to accessing cloud gaming services through the browser, an admittedly lacking experience compared to a native app.

Apple and Google have both been coming under increased scrutiny over the control they wield over their app stores. From governments to competing companies and developers, it seems that the walls are closing in on both tech giants.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.