Netflix launched a mobile gaming service earlier this month for Android users. Netflix claims that the iOS version is in development, but Bloomberg tech reporter Mark Gurman states that Apple's App Store policies will stop Netflix from making its games available through its app.
Apple prohibits third-party apps to be used as hubs for games. This has been a problem with cloud gaming services such as Nvidia GeForce Now and Xbox Cloud Gaming. This is why cloud gaming services cannot offer their games via a web app.
Apple will have to modify its rules or allow Netflix an exception
Gurmans Power On newsletter claims that Netflix will be able to circumvent Apple's rules and make its apps available through the App Store. The Netflix app will not allow you to download or play the games. You can only launch them from that location. The current service works in this manner on Android. The games are packaged neatly in a tab on Netflix, but can be downloaded separately from the Google Play Store.
This setup is good, but it's not ideal for a gaming service that offers everything. The service should allow users to download and play their games directly from the site. Gurman predicts Netflix will eventually move its games to the cloud. This would be fine for Android. However, Apple's policies make cloud gaming almost impossible to succeed, so services must settle for mediocre web apps. It is unclear what the future holds for Netflix's cloud gaming service.
Gurman states that Apple will have to modify its rules or allow Netflix to be exempted from it. This leaves Netflix's ultimate success in the hands Apple, a long-standing partner and also a growing competitor.