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Epic's CEO vows to continue the fight with Apple over App Store control

By Kenny Yeo - on 9 Dec 2022, 10:06am

Epic's CEO vows to continue the fight with Apple over App Store control

Epic CEO Tim Sweeney (Image source: Getty Images)

Tim Sweeney is not giving up. In a recent interview, he said he and his company – Epic Games – would double down on the battle against Apple and the App Store and that they would "fight on to victory, whatever it costs."

If you have already forgotten, Epic Games went to court with Apple in 2020 when it decided to include other in-app purchasing methods in its popular game Fortnite. This would effectively bypass Apple's own payment system and thereby prevent Apple from collecting its fees. Obviously, this did not go down well with Apple and the two became embroiled in a bitter battle. 

The court eventually found Epic Games to be in breach of its contract and must reimburse Apple with 30% of the revenue it collected when it implemented its own payment system.

As for Apple, though it largely won the case, it did lose in one big way because they were found to be violated California's anti-steering rules and that they must let developers include links to outside payment systems. Unsurprisingly, both parties decided to appeal.

And now, in an interview, Sweeney reaffirmed his commitment to fighting Apple and intends to take the case all the way to the Supreme Court. 

Sweeney said: 

Certainly, if Epic intends to take this as far as possible and necessary to achieve victory, and I believe Apple does, too.

And so we could reasonably expect that, whatever the ruling of the Ninth Circuit, that the decision would likely be appealed, and then it’s up to the Supreme Court to decide to hear or not. It’s the appellate court has to take an appeal so this sort of case from the District Court, but the Supreme Court does not so it would be up to them.

Sweeney also said that he would settle only on one condition:

Epic would settle for, and only for, unfettered ability of developers — it’s not just Epic but all the developers — to compete in the app distribution market. And freedom of developers and consumers to engage in direct distribution where consumers can download apps from the developer’s website, and the unfettered competition in payments for in-app purchases... And so Epic is not conducting any sort of elaborate negotiation here. We are simply going to fight as long as it takes to get to what we’re asking for. And if Apple would settle for that, we would settle it today.

Court hearings for the appeals began in the Ninth Circuit earlier last month on 14 November. 

Source: The Verge

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