Apple Relaxes App Store Rules for Emulators

Delta, a Nintendo Emulator, Seizes Opportunity After Apple Policy Change

In response to the EU’s new Digital Markets Act, Apple recently made significant revisions to its App Store guidelines, ushering in a pivotal change regarding the acceptance of game emulators. Seizing this opportunity, one developer wasted no time in capitalizing on the updated policies, promptly releasing Delta—an all-in-one Nintendo emulator—on the App Store.

Delta’s App Store listing touts it as a comprehensive emulator for iOS, building upon the foundation laid by its predecessor, GBA4iOS. With expanded support for various gaming systems, including NES, SNES, N64, and DS, Delta promises to elevate the emulation experience for users, with plans to incorporate emulation support for additional consoles in the future.

Although Delta has long been accessible on iOS through alternative channels, such as the developer’s AltStore app, its official arrival on the App Store marks a significant shift in Apple’s stance toward emulation software. Previously barred from the App Store due to Apple’s strict policies, Delta’s inclusion signals a newfound openness to retro game console emulator apps.


However, the availability of Delta on the App Store remains limited to regions outside the EU. To cater to European users, Testut Tech, the developer behind Delta, introduced AltStore PAL—an alternative app marketplace compliant with the EU’s regulations. This move aligns with the EU’s mandate for platform operators to permit alternative app distribution platforms within their ecosystems.

Apple’s recent decision to allow emulator apps in its App Store marks a significant shift in its stance on retro gaming emulation. However, this policy change comes with a caveat: developers must adhere to strict App Store guidelines and legal requirements to ensure compliance and avoid potential regulatory issues. While the approval of Delta, a popular emulator app, for distribution on the App Store is a positive development for retro gaming enthusiasts, its long-term availability remains uncertain.