EPIC Games CEO, Tim Sweeney, has just dropped the bombshell that Fortnite isn’t coming back to the App Store any time soon.
Fortnite was removed from iOS last year after Epic added in-app direct payments to circumvent the cut Apple takes via its payment processing service.
Epic presented this as a battle it was waging for consumers, but due to the approach it decided to take – which was just flat out ignoring Apple’s Ts&Cs – Fortnite was removed from the App Store altogether.
Since then, Apple has slashed the “exorbitant” 30% payment processing charge cut it takes from its payment processing to 15%.
Of course, this only applies to app makers who make less than $1M in annual net sales.
The case went to trial and played out back in May, and Apple won on nine out of 10 counts.
The one count that’s an Epic win is the ruling that “Apple’s anti-steering provisions hide critical information from consumers and illegally stifle consumer choice.
“When coupled with Apple’s incipient antitrust violations, these anti-steering provisions are anticompetitive and a nationwide remedy to eliminate those provisions is warranted.”
In a nutshell, that means Apple is now required to allow app store makers to direct their customers to payment options other than Apple’s in-app purchasing.
Epic isn’t satisfied with the outcome with Sweeney tweeting:
“Today’s ruling isn’t a win for developers or for consumers. Epic is fighting for fair competition among in-app payment methods and app stores for a billion consumers.”
He added that “Fortnite will return to the iOS App Store when and where Epic can offer in-app payment in fair competition with Apple in-app payment, passing along the savings to consumers.”
Since then, there have been further developments outside of the appeals process.
In a tweet this week, a furious Sweeney said, “Apple lied. Apple spent a year telling the world, the court, and the press they’d ‘welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else’.
“Epic agreed, and now Apple has reneged in another abuse of its monopoly power over a billion users.”
In a follow-up tweet, which included an email from Sweeney to Apple’s Phil Schiller, he added that Epic had agreed to “play by the same rules as everyone else.”
But in spite of that, “Apple informed Epic that Fortnite will be blacklisted from the Apple ecosystem until the exhaustion of all court appeals, which could be as long as a 5-year process.”
Sweeney isn’t happy with the outcome at all, and no doubt Fortnite fans who were hoping to see the game return to the App Store won’t be too happy either.
As it stands, you still can’t play Fortnite on Apple devices, and that may be the case for the next five years.
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After that bombshell, you might want to check out the best Samsung Galaxy deals.
Of course, if you’re not too fussed about Fortnite being absent from the App Store, there’s always the Black Friday iPhone deals coming up.
In other Fortnite news, the Season 8 XP problem is set to be fixed next week, so the grind won’t be such a slog.
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