Fortnite Creator Sues Apple After Game Is Banned From App Store

Fortnite Creator Sues Apple After Game Is Banned From App Store

Fortnite Creator Sues Apple After Game Is Banned From App Store

Fortnite Creator Sues Apple After Game Is Banned From App Store

“Epic could likely have worked out a privileged deal with Apple — as other big tech companies have,” said Matthew Ball, the managing partner at Epyllion Industries, which operates a venture capital fund. “Instead, it is fighting for the marketplace.”

Epic’s clash with Apple is the latest in a series of recent spats between app makers and the company. The music service Spotify has complained to regulators in Europe and the United States. Blix, which makes an email app that competes with Apple’s service, also sued Apple on antitrust grounds last year. And last week, Microsoft ended a pilot of its mobile gaming app and Facebook watered down its gaming app on iPhones because of Apple’s rules.

Apple has said that all app developers are subject to the same rules, and that its commission is fair. Apple has argued that it spends billions of dollars on the App Store and iPhone technology, creating business opportunities for companies like Epic.

“Epic has had apps on the App Store for a decade, and have benefited from the App Store ecosystem, including its tools, testing, and distribution that Apple provides to all developers,” Apple said in a statement on Thursday. “The fact that their business interests now lead them to push for a special arrangement does not change the fact that these guidelines create a level playing field for all developers and make the store safe for all users.”

In past disputes that led to bad publicity, Apple tweaked its rules to let complaining app developers back into the App Store. But Epic’s fights appears to be about more than just its app.

In 2018, Epic released its own app store, and began charging developers 12 percent. Tim Sweeney, the chief executive and founder of Epic, based in Cary, N.C., said in an interview last month the Epic Games Store had processed more than $1 billion in transactions. Even with the lower fee, he said, Epic still makes a profit of 5 to 7 percent.

Mr. Sweeney said that he felt obligated to “make this industry a better and fairer place.”

“It’s critical to the future of humanity,” he said. “Otherwise you have these corporations who control all commerce and all speech.”


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