Play Games Services Ends Support for iOS, Removes Gifts, Requests and More On Android
Google today announced the withdrawal of Google Play Games Services (GPGS) from iOS as a part of its efforts to streamline the process on Android and iOS. Google will also be dropping several features from Android. GPGS provided game analytics tools and social multi-player features for iOS.
GPGS is a package of tools and services that assist game developers in updating their apps and also adding social elements like sharing and invites management. The reason for withdrawing the assistance from iOS is low usage. The Native SDK release (2.3) will not support integration with iOS anymore and Google will not be offering any support or update for the iOS SDK.
In its blog post, Google says:
In order to help developers make great games and build their businesses, we offer Google Play Games Services (GPGS). GPGS provides powerful tools to build, analyze and retain your audience and optimize your game. After listening to developer feedback and examining usage, we have decided to remove some of the features so we can focus on making our offering more useful.
For Android, Google will be removing in-game features like Gifts, Requests, and Quests. The reason for removing these features is also the same as iOS – low usage. Google has assessed developer feedback and the conclusion led to the removal of less used services on Android. Google plans to completely deactivate the aforementioned in-game features by April 2018. Google is providing a 12-month window (April 2017- April 2018) to the developers who use the above-mentioned features so that they can plan for the removal.
However, Google notes that other in-game features like Sign-in, Achievements, Leaderboards, and Multiplayer will very well stay in the interface. The company states that there is high usage of engagement and reporting tools, which means that Google will be keeping them for future enhancements.
Besides, Google also states that it will remain commited towards the development of Play Games. With recent integration of Firebase Analytics and its support for Unity and C++, the company confirms its future plans for the platform.
Google also notes that these changes would help it to remain focused on its efforts on providing services that are valued by the developers and help them in creating high quality and engaging games.