The Verge reports that Apple is warning developers that it is removing a large number of apps from the App Store that have not been updated for “a significant amount of time.”
An “App Improvement Notice” email was sent to affected developers, informing them that Apple is removing apps that have “not been updated in a significant amount of time” unless developers issue an update within 30 days:
This app has not been updated for a significant amount of time and is scheduled to be removed from sale in 30 days. No action is required for the app to remain available to users who have already downloaded the app.
You can keep this app available for new users to discover and download from the App Storey submitting an update for review within 30 days.
If no update is submitted within 30 days, the app will be removed from sale.
Some developers have expressed concern over Apple’s move. Protopop Games developer Robert Kabwe on Twitter said that the move is threatening to his game, “Motivoto,” since it has not been updated since March 2019. Meanwhile, FlickType Apple Watch Keyboard developer Kosta Eleftheriou, said that while Apple took down a version of his app because it has not been updated in two years, his once-popular game “Pocket God” remains available on the store, despite it having received no updates since 2015.
Apple’s App Store Improvements page states:
To make it easier for customers to find great apps that fit their needs, we want to ensure that apps available on the App Store are functional and up-to-date. We are implementing an ongoing process of evaluating apps, removing apps that no longer function as intended, don’t follow current review guidelines, or are outdated.
Apple has traditionally removed apps from the App Store that have not been updated for some time. However, it is not clear if this policy has been continuously or consistently enforced.