The battle of Apple vs Epic Games began in 2020 over the in-app purchase of a gaming app. It all started when Epic Games sent an email to Apple; asking for permission to build their own in-app purchase system over the one, which Apple has on their App store. Apple team replied to Epic Games, stating that their email was ‘disappointing’.
The Battle Between Apple Vs Epic Games
Though Apple rejected Epic Games to build their own in-app purchase system, Epic Games set up their own system. They created their own in-app purchase system for the game Fortnite. It is a very popular game on App Store. Epic Games offered the users a discount if the purchase is being directed from the app system of Fortnite.
Apple charges a hefty amount of 30% commission from the apps existing on the App Store when an in-app purchase is made. As an example, if anyone buys V-Bucks currency in the Fortnite game; Apple will get an amount from every payment made to purchase the V-Bucks currency. The same goes for the other purchases.
When Apple got to know this, they considered it as a violation of the rules and regulations of the App Store. The step Apple took is to remove Fortnite from App Store. They also disabled the support engine for Epic Games, named ‘Unreal Engine’; which helps to get the HD cinematics in the game.
When Apple denied to restore or put back the Fortnite game and the gaming engine; Epic Games charged a lawsuit against Apple for possessing a monopolistic proprietorship on the iOS apps via the App Store.
Who Will Win The Battle
The Apple vs Epic Games battle is now on the center stage. This matter is a current lawsuit filed by Epic Games against Apple in August 2020. Epic Games’ co-founder and CEO Tim Sweeney have raised questions regarding the monopoly of Apple on the iOS platform.
Legal review of this filed lawsuit identifies that the key problem is; whether Apple is holding a monopoly over the iOS apps or not. Epic Games has allegedly stated that Apple has put certain uncanny rules over the apps via the App Store, and Apple also restricts the apps to have an in-app purchase system. Thus, they receive a 30% commission from the amount of in-app purchases. Though Apple has also stated that they don’t run any monopoly over App Store; and Epic Games participates in various app platforms, not just the iOS.
If we look at the bigger picture, we can see that not only Apple’s App Store charges 30% from developers; but also Google Play Store, Samsung, Microsoft do the same. But taking a closer look can change the scenario. App Store charges 15% from small businesses and developers, not 30%. Whereas Google Play Store charges 15% after a period of 12 months.
Here are some points that are being mentioned in the respect of both parties; regarding the lawsuit.
Points in Apple’s hand – Apple has got certain good traits for them. Apple claims that its App Store has stopped fraudulent transactions of more than 1.5 billion dollars for app purchases.
With this points Apple can effortlessly affirm that they are making the App Store a better place.
Apple’s CEO also stated that they review 1,00,000 apps per week and end up rejecting 40,000 of them, for the quality, for rules, and for the policies. This strict surveillance makes the environment of the App Store safe and spam-free.
Points in Epic Games’ hand – On the other hand, Epic Games also has some points. In the matter of this Apple vs Epic Games battle; a trail of public sentiment will be on the side of the Epic Games. The reason behind this is, the developers, companies, and users are kind of frustrated with paying a large amount of money on the App Store.
Already some of the most popular apps like Spotify; Netflix have taken the decision to ditch App Store in-app purchase system. They redirected their customers to their own website. These companies together have set up a coalition for App Fairness against the policies of the App Store.
Epic Games has already a perk to claim that the Apple App Store has a hefty amount of cut-up of 30% from the in-app purchases. Epic Games can use this as a tool to justify their filed lawsuit.
Currently, all the developers and app users are waiting to hear the judgment regarding the Apple vs Epic Games battle. However, sometimes some rules are needed to be reviewed or written over and all app stores should think about revising their policies and regulations themselves; to make a better pricing structure for the developers, companies, and users.