Apple has reportedly shifted its strategy away from its arcade games. The US-based tech giant has canceled contracts for some games that were still in the development phase. It will continue seeking other games that the company believes will retain Apple Arcade subscribers. Also Read - Apple, Google's 'Exposure Notification' API comes to India, but Aarogya Setu doesn't support it yet
As per a report by Bloomberg, Apple withdrew contracts with multiple game studios earlier this year. These studios were also informed of the new approach the company was taking. Developers were reportedly told that their upcoming titles didn’t meet the ‘engagement’ standards Apple was seeking. The report also mentions that these sources claimed that Apple is increasingly interested in games that will persuade Apple Arcade users to stay beyond the free trial period. Also Read - Apple tells you why iPad still doesn't have a calculator app
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Apple Arcade journey
Apple Arcade launched in September 2019 with a 30-day free trial for users. Beyond this, Apple would charge users USD 4.99 per month for unlimited access to a wide variety of games. This worked because unlike free mobile games, arcade games do not provoke players into paying extra to win or make in-game progress. Also Read - Apple's iPhone 12 series could be sold without charger or EarPods
This approach also reportedly won praise. However, despite the 120 titles Apple has released since none has become a huge hit. Apple soon started offering the second month of free trails, indicating that users were not being retained by the service once paying came into the equation.
The Cupertino-based company mentioned in a statement that “Apple Arcade has redefined what a gaming service can be, putting unlimited play at the fingertips of subscribers and their families across all their Apple devices.”
Apple also mentioned that changes based on user feedback were always in the plan. The company put in tens of millions of dollars to support the creation of arcade games. With Apple paying USD 1 million to USD 5 million for each title, the brand needs users to get hooked to the service for the investment to pay off.