If you have been a part of the Cloud Gaming scene for some time now, you may know that many of the big platforms do not offer an iOS application. If they do, it is most likely a limited version of the app.
As Microsoft's testing period for the xCloud app has expired, they decided to pull the application from iOS as Apple continued to block it. Why? According to a statement to Business Insider, Apple said it blocked the xCloud application because they are unable to review every game that will be available through Game Pass.
For many, this isn't very pleasant, but for the companies trying to get Cloud Gaming out to the masses, this is a huge blow.
In response to Apple blocking the xCloud app, Microsoft said in a statement to The Verge:
"Our testing period for the Project xCloud preview app for iOS has expired. Unfortunately, we do not have a path to bring our vision of cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to gamers on iOS via the Apple App Store. Apple stands alone as the only general purpose platform to deny consumers from cloud gaming and game subscription services like Xbox Game Pass. And it consistently treats gaming apps differently, applying more lenient rules to non-gaming apps even when they include interactive content. All games available in the Xbox Game Pass catalog are rated for content by independent industry ratings bodies such as the ESRB and regional equivalents. We are committed to finding a path to bring cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to the iOS platform. We believe that the customer should be at the heart of the gaming experience and gamers tell us they want to play, connect and share anywhere, no matter where they are. We agree."
I agree with Microsoft. The games available on almost all Cloud Gaming platforms are already rated and reviewed by many other large bodies that are reputable. You have ESRB, PEGI, and many others, as well as the Cloud Gaming platform themselves, making sure that the games available on the platform are not inappropriate or malicious.
In my opinion, Apple is not blocking these apps because they cannot review every game available on the platform, but because they have no way of receiving a 30% cut of the games that these platforms sell or offer.
Android users will be able to use Cloud Gaming apps like xCloud, Shadow, Stadia, etc. However, iOS users may have to wait a while.