Fortnite is back on iOS, but not via the App Store.
In 2020, Epic Games updated Fortnite to offer in-app payments directly to game developers, bypassing Apple’s strict rules for in-app payments and fees. Apple has permanently banned the popular multiplayer shooter from the App Store for not being particularly good at breaking these guidelines. And, as of today, the game still can’t be downloaded this way, and it may be years before it returns to the App Store, but there are other ways to play Fortnite on your iPhone or iPad.
Earlier this month, Microsoft announced a partnership with Epic Games to make Fortnite available to anyone with an Xbox Cloud Gaming account. Nvidia announced a similar partnership with Epic Games that will allow gamers to play Fortnite via its GeForce Now streaming service. You can play Fortnite again on your iPhone or iPad as long as you have access to a web browser like Safari or Chrome.
Here’s what you need to know.
For Xbox Cloud Gaming, first create a Microsoft account or sign in.
If you already have a Microsoft account, you can skip to the next section. Otherwise, you will need to create a Microsoft account first. This will take a few minutes.
In the web browser of your choice on your iPhone or iPad, go to the Microsoft registration website and create a new account using your email address or phone number. The process includes creating a password, adding your name and date of birth, verifying your email address, and solving puzzles to prove you’re not a bot.
Save your username and password in iCloud or save your credentials elsewhere, as you’ll need them later to play Fortnite.
Now go to the Xbox Cloud Gaming website and add it to your home screen.
Open the Xbox Cloud Gaming website in Safari, Chrome, or another mobile web browser and press the green Play Free button under the Fortnite logo. If you’re not signed into a Microsoft account, sign in now. You’ll also need an Xbox account to play all the games, so do so when prompted to create an Xbox account.
Then hit the green Ready to Play button and a window will appear at the bottom of the screen where you can start playing by adding Xbox Cloud Gaming to your home screen. To do so, tap the Share button in the navigation bar, then tap Add to Home Screen. You need to add your website to the home button. Otherwise, you will not be able to play Fortnite.
Finally, open the home screen app and play Fortnite.
When the Xbox Cloud Gaming website appears on the home screen, tap Free Play, sign in to your Microsoft account, and tap Play for Fortnite players.
When the loading screen appears on Xbox, one of the Fortnite will appear. Use the on-screen controls to link your Fortnite account or play as a guest (I’m having trouble playing as a guest, so we recommend linking or unlinking an existing Fortnite account. Create’).
On the top left are various controls for muting the microphone, exiting the game, setting controls, opening the Xbox menu, and more. For the best experience, pull up Control Center, make sure the Lock Portrait Orientation switch is off, then rotate your phone horizontally to go full screen.
In terms of gameplay, Fortnite definitely doesn’t work as smoothly as on PC or console games, and the controls are a bit tricky to work with, but at least it provides a way to play on the go. As long as you have a good enough internet connection.
How to play Fortnite with GeForce Now for Nvidia
GeForce Now members can also play Fortnite on iOS thanks to video game streaming service Nvidia. However, unlike Xbox Cloud Gaming, you are limited to one session hour at a time with a free GeForce Now subscription. After an hour, the service turns off automatically, after which you can start another hour’s session, but continuous blackouts are not ideal.
To play Fortnite, open the GeForce Now website in your web browser, tap the Share icon, and tap Add to Home Screen to add the service as an app to your home screen. Next, launch the GeForce Now app you just created, agree to the terms and conditions, and tap Fortnite.
You must log into an existing account or create a new one before playing. Choose the free membership option (you can pay to avoid interrupting your session) and enter your email, password, display name and date of birth. Once you’ve created an account, go back and hit play to load Fortnite.
As with Xbox Cloud Gaming, there are multiple touch controls for playing games, showing the keyboard, muting the microphone, copying and pasting, and other actions. And, as mentioned in the previous section, we recommend playing the game horizontally to get more screen real estate.
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