May 19, 2024

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Game Boy emulator is now available on iPhone after App Store rules changed

Game Boy emulator is now available on iPhone after App Store rules changed

Apple changed its App Store rules last week to apparently allow game emulation on the iPhone for the first time.

After this policy change, the first emulator apps are now appearing in the store. iGBA It's a free Game Boy emulator for iPhone and iPad, which can actually load and play ROMs downloaded to the device – a category of apps that Apple would have unequivocally rejected a couple of weeks ago.

The iGBA developer is clearly taking advantage of the sudden change in rules. The application is a lazy version of Open source project GBA4iOSalthough monetized through embedded advertising.

However, it is a full-featured emulator. You can actually download Game Boy Advance or Game Boy Color ROMs from the web, then “unlock” the iGBA to start playing them. Save states, virtual controller customization, tactile settings, and external display projection via AirPlay are available here.

The change in App Store rules was a bit vague as to whether it would allow installation via sideloaded ROMs, as the language refers to licensed software emulated within the host app.

But assuming the iGBA approval isn't a reviewer's fault, there seems to be no limits to the ROM loading functionality, so the App Store is now open season for game emulators to exist and thrive.

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