Apple Arcade FAQ: Games, price, compatibility, and everything else you need to know

Apple announced its new Apple Arcade gaming subscription service at its March 25 “It’s show time” event, and it’ll launch sometime this fall. It’s basically Apple’s way of helping customers sort through the chaff in the App Store, as the highly curated service will feature premium games that are untainted by in-app purchases and ads. If it works as well as it sounds, it could elevate the perception of mobile gaming in general.

Many questions remain, but fortunately we already have plenty of answers. Here’s everything we know about Apple Arcade so far.

What is Apple Arcade?

Apple Arcade is a gaming subscription service for iOS, macOS, and tvOS that will initially feature more than 100 “new and exclusive” games. Apple is “handpicking” the games that you’ll get with the service and working with highly regarded game developers such as Hironobu Sakaguchi and Ken Wong. Apple Arcade games will have no in-app purchases, will be downloadable for offline play, and will be playable across the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV.

When will it be available?

Apple says “Apple Arcade will launch in fall 2019.” It’s probable that Apple will launch it alongside iOS 13 and macOS 10.15, or a point-release thereof. 

How much will it cost?

According to a promotional message 9to5Mac saw when it managed to get access to an internal beta in August, Apple Arcade will cost $4.99 per month and will come with a one-month trial. If you have a Family Sharing account, all members will be able to share it. This could change, but it sounds like a reasonable price.

Which Apple devices will allow me to play Apple Arcade games?

Apple says “subscribers can play Apple Arcade games across iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV.” Apple also says that you can pick up where you left off when you switch to another Apple device.

Apple

This seems like a small thing, but it hints at some big changes that might be coming to iOS and macOS.

Will Apple Arcade games have microtransactions or in-app purchases?

No. In Apple’s words, “since every game includes access to the full experience, including all game features, content, and future updates, no additional purchases will be required.”

Will Apple Arcade games have ads?

No. On a related note, Apple says Apple Arcade will have no ad tracking.