Microsoft will be removing apps without age ratings from the Windows Store starting tomorrow

The September 30 deadline looms closer for developers with abandoned apps on the Windows Store (via Neowin). As of tomorrow, apps that haven’t complied with Policy 11.11 will be removed from the store entirely.

Earlier in June, Microsoft sent out an email that declared their new stance on age ratings. Their attempt to bring compliance by app developers was able to be met by simply filling out a questionnaire that would take approximately five to ten minutes to complete. The multiple choice would then determine the app’s age rating by asking about violence, nudity, and other topics that might change age a child might be restricted from. This includes apps that are in beta whether they are in private or not.

It’s hard not to consider this the smarter move on the part of Microsoft. From what we can understand, there won’t be any bias for popular or long-term apps. It will only depend on if the developer has complied by taking the rating questionnaire. The removal of apps likely will cause a lot of outrage particularly in cases of popular apps that aren’t kept up to date anymore.

However, the attempt to make clearer ratings for their apps will be useful for customers that use the Add Family feature and monitor the downloads and purchases of their children’s Microsoft/Xbox account.

The certainty is that after tomorrow, we will see a lot fewer apps on the Windows Store. Could Microsoft be shooting itself in the foot by removing an undetermined amount of their precious apps? Or will the end justify the means and encourage developers to take the extra step to ensure compliance once Microsoft changes its policy in the future? No doubt it’s a hot topic so make sure to let us know all about what you think in the comments below.

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