Ex-App Store head says Apple Arcade violates Apple’s own policies

A previous head of the App Store told the US House of Representatives that Apple rejects subscription game services because they compete with Apple Arcade.

As the dispute between Apple and Epic Games continues, a former App Store manager has claimed that Apple does reject apps that compete with its own services. Questioned by the US House of Representatives in its antitrust investigation, Philip Shoemaker said that the App Store had been used to protect Apple’s interests.

“[Apple] was not being honest,” he said when asked about the company’s claim that it treats all developers the same. Calling the App Store rules both “arbitrary” and “arguable,” he said that, “Apple has struggled with using the App Store as a weapon against competitors.”

“Apple has complete and unprecedented power over their customers’ devices,” he continued. “The decisions they make with regards to third-party apps needs to be above reproach, and currently are not.”

Shoemaker, who was senior director of Apple’s App Store Review team from March 2009 to April 2016 and had nothing to do with the Apple Arcade decision, nor the recent rules revision about game streaming services said that it is also untrue that Apple will not favor its own apps over those of competitors. He said that Apple Arcade was a type of app that was “consistently disallowed from the store,” if submitted by a third-party.

Shoemaker’s testimony in the House’s full report — embedded below — was first spotted by Business Insider.

The House’s antitrust investigation was into Amazon, Google, and Facebook as well as Apple. Recently, however, firms such as Microsoft have also claimed that the App Store game rules are unfair.

During his seven years at Apple, Shoemaker says that he “built [the] App Store Review team from 4 to over 300 employees…