How Do I Get A Game License Approval Number (GRN/ISBN) for the Apple App Store China (iOS)?

If you have been affected by Apple’s recent policy to remove revenue-generating games from the Apple App Store that do not have a game license approval number (ISBN) from the Chinese government, we are here to help.

Background

Starting on July 1, 2020, Apple is enforcing the Chinese government policy of requiring game licenses for paid games and games with in-app purchases. Other games remain unaffected.

Now that the deadline has come, here is an always-current update of everything we know now about how this is being handled. And you can read more background about that decision as it unfolded this year.

What to do right now: Emergency steps

If you have already been removed from the Apple China App Store, here is a handy guide for what you can do now to preserve your user base and protect your interests in the Chinese market.

Next, you will want to consider your long term options:

Link: Game Up For Removal From Apple App Store? Weighing Your Two Best Options.

How to get a game license approval number for your iOS game in China

Whether you have an iOS game or Android game, the process for acquiring a game license is the same. Once the process is complete (which can take 6-12 months), you will receive an ISBN number (also called a Game Registration Number (GRN) or approval number) from the NPPA in order to publish on the Apple App Store China.

Your game will require a full content review as part of the registration process, so get familiar with the content restrictions to understand what changes you may need to make to pass the approval process. Also know that China has its own PII and data localization requirements, and some of your APIs and SDKs may need to be updated to versions that will work behind the Great Firewall of China.

Most importantly, you need a partner in China to help you publish your game, as non-Chinese companies and individuals are unable to apply for a game license.

We can help with all of this. Learn more about the exact steps required, from beginning to end, to publish your Apple iOS game on the Apple App Store in China so that you can acquire your game license approval number (ISBN) as soon as possible.

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