Apple has published its 2022 App Store Transparency Report recently and in it, there are quite a lot of stats. One notable stat, however, is the amount of app takedown demands the Chinese Communist Party has submitted.
Apple said that it had received a total of 1,474 government takedown demands from around the world. Strikingly, China mainland accounted for 1,435 of those and Hong Kong accounted for one.
Both of these territories are now under the control of the Chinese Communist Party which is known for taking strict measures. The vast majority of the removals were games that had not obtained a Game Registration Number, Apple said.
In China, publishers planning to release commercial games have to get a Game Registration Number (GRN) from the authorities. These are used to regulate the gaming industry in the country to ensure releases meet the country’s content standards.
While the GRN regime can be useful for protecting children from harmful content, the process makes game development more bureaucratic. It’s clearly frustrating to some in China as 1,276 games were submitted to the App Store without first obtaining a GRN.
China’s government topped the list for app takedown demands to Apple. It was followed by India (14 removal demands), Pakistan (10 removal demands), Russia (7 removal demands), and Turkey (2 removal demands).
Moving away from China’s takedown demands, Apple also highlighted the most common reasons that it rejects App Store submissions. The most common reason for rejecting submissions was performance issues, then legal issues, and then design issues. Other common issues were safety and business issues.
The iPhone maker also shared that it had a total of 36,974,015 developers signed up as Apple developers. In 2022, it had to terminate 428,487 accounts, mainly for fraud but export controls were also a reason given.
Apple said that it will publish a new App Store Transparency Report on an annual basis. It should be interesting to keep an eye on how government takedown demands change over the course of the next year.