Apple is said to have taken the popular trading platforms MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5) off the App Store at the end of last week. The news surrounding it on social media has recently gotten more attention from the trading communities than anything else. Let’s see what all the fuss is about and its impact on you as a day trader.
Why did Apple remove MT4 and MT5 from the App Store?
MT4 and its more recent cousin MT5 are creations of MetaQuotes, a Cyprus-based fintech software developer. MetaQuotes has a more than 50% market share in the online trading platform market among online Forex and Contracts For Difference (CFD) brokers and their retail trader clients.
These are some of the reasons why the possible takedown of the mobile trading app from the Apple App Store occurred.
Links to Western sanctions on Russia?
Regarding the reasons for Apple’s removal of MT4 and MT5, there has been much speculation online over the last few hours, with much of the discussion centered on Apple’s removal of other apps with ties to Russia.
While MetaQuotes is headquartered in Limassol, Cyprus, the company originated in Russia; its founder and CEO, Renat Fatkhullin, and his brother Lenar Fatkhullin, who serves as the company’s Marketing Director, are both Russian.
What appears to be retaliation by the US government is an alleged (unconfirmed) assistance provided by the CEO of MetaQuotes in assisting Russian oligarchs in moving funds out of Russia.
Apple’s trend of removing apps from the App Store
Another possible explanation is based on another recent Apple trend of removing apps for which Apple has received a certain number of complaints, either about the apps themselves or about how they are used.
According to Forbes senior tech writer Cyrus Farivar, an article titled “How One Man Lost $1 Million To A Crypto ‘Super Scam’ Called Pig Butchering” ran earlier this month, covering a scam in which the criminals got retail traders to download MetaTrader as part of the con.
While MetaQuotes was not involved in the scam, Apple spokesperson Adam Dema told Forbes that “the company is investigating complaints about MetaTrader and will take additional action to protect App Store users if necessary.”.
The article also described how MetaQuotes allows MT4/MT5 licensees to use a plug-in known as Virtual Dealer, which scammers can use to “manipulate market prices, and simulate account balances, profits, or losses.”
According to the Global Anti-Scam Organization (GASO), based in the United States and Singapore, MetaQuotes has few (to no) rules or policies prohibiting license holders from using third-party plug-in software such as Virtual Dealer.
MetaQuotes did not comply with Apple’s guidelines
According to a report in Finance Magnates, a MetaQuotes representative said that the company received a letter from Apple on Friday, September 23, stating that the firm’s trading apps do not comply with the App Store Review Guidelines.
According to the software development firm, the apps were removed on the aforementioned date.
“Customers who have already downloaded the Apps will not be affected, according to Apple. These customers can continue to use the Apps from their devices and access any in-app purchase products,” the representative elaborated.
Meanwhile, removing MT4 and MT5 from the App Store also does not seem to be affecting those in the Apple or iOS mobile environment (iPhone, iPad) who have already downloaded the apps to their devices, although it is unlikely that those users will be able to download future updates, upgrades, or patches to their devices.
Until now, neither Apple nor MetaQuotes have commented on the removal of MT4 and MT5 from the App Store or the reason(s) for the removal.
MetaTrader: A Market Leader
MetaTrader has been used by industry stakeholders for decades and is still a top choice for online retail traders.
While MT4 was introduced in 2005 and optimized for online forex trading, MT5 was released in 2010, providing access to additional CFD markets such as stocks, indices, commodities, futures, energies, and so on. Let’s now discuss the impacts of its removal and your options as a retail trader (day trader).
Are all MT5 and MT4 Platforms gone?
Apple is the only company that has removed the platforms from its App store. For the most part, you are still able to use the MT4 and MT5 for Windows, Mac, and Android depending on the broker.
Can you still download MT4 or MT5?
Due to Russia’s political situation and other factors (as mentioned above), you can no longer download MT4 or MT5 from the Apple App Store. However, MT4 mobile is still available for all Android users (as you will see). You should check to see if your broker supports this mobile app version.
In most situations, you can still download MT4 or MT5 for Windows and Mac. It should be noted that your broker will need to support these versions because not all brokers do.
How to use MetaTrader 4 now
If you are an avid fan of Metatrader 4 and MT5 and still want to utilize one of the platforms, you will need to look at your broker’s options. You can pursue three options to keep your day trading from being negatively affected.
MT4 web terminal
The first is to use the MT4 web terminal. However, there are two aspects you would have to consider here, and they are namely;
- Does your broker provide an MT4 or MT5 web terminal interface
- Will you be able to use it on your phone
Regarding the first factor, you will need to ensure that, in fact, your broker does support the option for you to use the web terminal. It will help if you remember that most (if not all) brokers will have their own versions of MT4 or MT5, and as with the software for Windows or Mac, you can’t just sign into any terminal.
If your broker supports an MT4 web terminal portal (or MT5), you will want to see if you can use it on your iOS device by signing in through the browser. Remember that Apple iOS devices will use Safari as their browser, so you will need to see what MT4 is like through its web terminal and if you have access to all technical indicators, trading charts, and other features.
MT4 Android (Google Playstore)
While it is no longer available for download on the App Store, MT4 and MT5 are still available on the Google Play Store. Additionally, the desktop versions of MT4 and MT5 are still available from most brokers (as stated).
If you are adamant and determined to stick with the MT4 mobile app, then your other choice is to purchase (or use) a smartphone that supports MT4 Android. It is more than likely your broker will support a version of the platform that will work on Android.
If, for some reason, your broker does not support mobile Metatrader for Android you should consider changing to one that does. One of the top brokers we reviewed that does is ZFX.
Choose another forex broker
We touched on the fact that you may want to consider changing your broker. If you are a day trader and do not have much capital invested, this might be a wise choice.
Use their MT5 or MT4 platform
As we said, you are still able to use the MetaTrader 4 and MT5 platforms on Windows and Mac if your broker supports it. If they do not, then the option stands that you should opt to look for a new broker that supports these platforms in one of the forms mentioned;
- MetaTrader for Windows
- MetaTrader for Mac
- MetaTrader for Android
How to choose a forex broker?
Choosing a broker should not be taken lightly and is a little beyond this article’s scope. However, here are some tips you should consider if you want to switch now that MT4 and MT5 are no longer available from the app store;
- The broker must be safe and reliable
- Preferably NDD, STP, and ECN compliant
- They should be regulated
- Look for commissions on the assets you will trade on
- Pay attention to the account minimum
- Look out for account fees
- Look out for the fine print
- See if other features like tools and education are available
Can I use another mobile trading app?
You may be wondering if there is an easier way to trade now that MT4 and MT5 are no longer available on iOS. Most reputable brokers have moved away from mobile MetaTrader and built their own proprietary mobile trading app that lets you one-tap trade.
Most (like the ZFX mobile app) include financial news and market insights that let you backtest strategies and keep up to date with the markets.
In some cases, these apps tend to be simpler to use than the traditional MT4 and MT5 mobile apps. Everything from installation to registration, trading, and exploring many different assets in a user-friendly interface focuses on a pleasurable trading experience.
Although Apple has removed MetaTrader from their iOS platform, users who keep it installed can still utilize it for their trading. Other Than that, you will need to use the web terminal, Windows, or Mac versions depending on your broker’s capability.
Then you also have the option to use the Android version if you don’t mind switching phones, but choosing a broker with a proprietary mobile trading app may be your best bet.