Can Epic Games win the Legal Battle Against Apple

Alan Joseph Alan Joseph
Apr 10, 2021 5 min read
Can Epic Games win the Legal Battle Against Apple

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A trial is being set for May 2021 for the lawsuits and legal filings between Apple and Epic Games. We may finally be able to see a conclusion for the lawsuits and filings.

There have been a couple of lawsuits between these two corporations. All the issues started over when epic games found a way to avoid paying 30% of fees charged by Apple on its app store. Let’s look at all the lawsuits and legal filings which has happened to date by Apple and Epic Games.

Epic Games Circumvention
Fortnite Delisted from Stores
Epic Games Response to Apple
Epic Games sues Apple
Microsoft’s support for Epic Games
Judgment by the U.S Court
The Next Trial
FAQ

Epic Games Circumvention

The entire issue started back on 13 August 2020, when Epic Games had introduced an update for its gaming app Fortnite on iOS and Android devices. The new update gave the users an option to purchase V-bucks directly from Epic Games rather than doing it through App store on iOS devices or the play store for Android devices.

Generally, when you purchase anything on the app store or Google play store, Google and Apple will charge 30% as a transaction fee. But with the new update for Epic Games gaming application, they had found a way to avoid paying 30% transaction fees to both Google and Apple.

This reduced the price for users to purchase V-bucks at a cheaper price as they dint have to pay 30% of the transaction fee to Apple or Google.

Fortnite Delisted from Stores

Apple responded quickly. They gave an incredibly quick response on the same day that is 13 August 2020. Apple immediately delisted Fortnite from the app store. Soon after that, even Google followed the same by removing the app from the Google play store.

It was an unexpected move from Apple as the company was taking its major source of revenue from one of the most popular games in the world.


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Epic Games Response to Apple

In no time Epic Games had released a response for Apple’s delisting. A 1984 Fortnite video was aired by Epic Games on the same day in which Fortnite Parodied an Apple ad. The ad communicated a warning of the big corporations having dominance over life.

1984 video is considered to be a statement from Epic Games. It was positioning itself as a corporation that can fight another corporation against its dominance in the market. After the delisting of Fortnite Epic Games took the fight directly to Apple.

Registered users of Fortnite worldwide
Registered users of Fortnite worldwide

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Epic Games sues Apple

Epic Games filed a lawsuit against Apple in California. Epic Games strongly stated that it would build launch its own app storefront on the iOS devices. Epic Games stated that they felt obliged to charge extra for their V-bucks due to the extra transaction fees charged by App store.

Epic’s lawsuit is concentrated on launching its own app storefront on iOS devices. This is expected to be a separate from Apple’s app store and this would open opportunities for other developers as well.

Microsoft’s support for Epic Games

Microsoft had indicated its support for Epic Games lawsuit against Apple. This was mainly concentrated on Apple’s decision to block Epic Games from accessing the Unreal engine and updating it for iOS devices.

Microsoft alleged that this would have a really big impact on the games on iOS devices and that relied on the Unreal engine. It meant that the games which used Unreal Engine will not receive any more updates.

Microsoft Backed Epic Games
Microsoft Backed Epic Games

Microsoft Vs. Apple Business Model
Microsoft and Apple are the two largest companies in the world. The business model of Apple is based on customer-centric devices and innovation. Microsoft’s business spanned across Windows, Office products, Gaming (Xbox), Hardware, Web search engine (Bing), Cloud, LinkedIn, etc.

Judgment by the U.S Court

Later in August, a judge ruled in favor of Apple but for a temporary point of time. The U.S district court Judge ruled that Apple did not have to immediately reinstate Fortnite into their app store.

The Judge also stated that Apple could not stop Epic Games from accessing the Unreal Engine. The Judge provided permission for Epic Games to continue providing updates for its Unreal Engine, even though Fortnite was not reinstated in the app store.

The Next Trial

It was later announced that Epic Games and Apple would move to the court for the next trial which will be held on 3 May 2021. This trial will be concentrated on exploring Apple’s dominance as a monopoly over the distribution of apps.

The trial would be in the limelight for the reasons such as whether one of the most popular games in the world would return back or will ever be able to return back to the iOS devices.

The other reasons would include whether Epic games would be able to maintain their access towards the Unreal Engine and whether a third-party apps storefront can be launched on the iOS devices other than the app store.

FAQ

Why was Epic Games removed from app store?

Epic Games took the unfortunate step of violating the App Store guidelines that are applied equally to every developer and designed to keep the store safe for our users. As a result their Fortnite app has been removed from the store.

Is Fortnite banned on Apple?

Apple has banned the popular mobile game Fortnite amid a legal battle with its publisher, Epic Games, but the iPhone maker's customers may soon be able to resume playing the title.

What is V bucks?

V bucks is an in-game currency that can be spent in Fortnite Battle Royale, Creative, and Save the World modes.

Conclusion

We will have to wait and look forward for the next trial to analyze all the answers and solutions for the above reasons and this lawsuit of Apple and Epic Games is expected to have a really huge consequence to be faced throughout the gaming industry.

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