The crackdown will reportedly target apps that have not been updated in a “significant amount of time”, potentially affecting thousands of apps.
The email, titled ‘App Improvement Notice’, gave developers just 30 days to update their apps in order to save them from being removed.
“I feel sick,” wrote Robert Kabwe, a developer at Protopop Games who claims that his fully-functional game Motivoto will be removed because it has not been updated since March 2019.
“It’s part of their App improvement system. This is not cool. Console games from 2000 are still available for sale. This is an unfair barrier to indie devs.”
Fellow app developer Kosta Eleftheriou wrote: “Apple also removed a version of my FlickType keyboard that catered specifically to the visually impaired community, because I hadn’t updated it in two years. Meanwhile, games like Pocket God have not been updated by the developers for seven years now.”
Mr Kabwe said there was “no indication” of what kind of update is needed, and it was not clear whether it was intended to solve a security or technical issue.
A screenshot of the email provided no further details, The Independent has reached out to Apple for comment.
The email stated: “This app has not been updated in a significant amount of time and is scheduled to be removed from sale in 30 days. No action is required for the app to remain available to users who have already downloaded the app.
“You can keep this app available for new users to discover and download from the App Store by submitting an update for review within 30 days. If no update is submitted within 30 days, the app will be removed from sale.”