All companies have on their app stores a minimum of 30 percent of purchases.
Google said it’s running a “free” application and will be trying to get Fortnite back to its official app store.
App stores other than Google Play are available on Android phones. Installing Fortnite from Epic Games’ own launcher program and Samsung Galaxy app store is still possible.
Fortnite’s latest release offered all players a 20 percent discount on their V-bucks in-game currency. What’s the catch? Players could only avail of the discount if they paid Epic Games directly instead of using payment systems from Apple or Google. It broke the rules of both stores.
Hence, Apple pulled Fortnite from its App Store on Thursday. Therefore, the new players couldn’t download the game.
Epic Games saw the incident coming. So the developer immediately released a video mocking Apple ‘s famous 1984-themed television commercial about battling a police state. It almost instantly published documents in court.
The app even disappeared from the Google Play store hours later. Compared to the high-profile promotional blitz it prepared to mock Apple and rally help, Google’s Epic was silent.
Officially, Fortnite has only tweeted that the Google Play app is inaccessible and that “more information will soon be available.”
What does Epic Games want?
Epic Games wanted the mobile app stores “to be fair” to all developers.
In both the Apple and Google court documents, the developer did not seek a compensation payout or a more favorable deal for itself.
It has launched a consumer-rights focused campaign using the social media tag #FreeFortnite. However, any 30 percent reduction taken by Apple and Google would benefit Epic Games enormously.
Epic Games received direct payments totaling over $1.6 billion, excluding transactions made by iOS and Google Play.
What is in the court case?
Records in the U.S. court records indicate that Epic Games lodged a lawsuit against Google much as it did against Apple.
Much of the complaint is about Google’s compulsory 30 percent cut from Play store sales, similar to Apple’s. The paper stresses that the slogan of Google once mentioned “don’t be evil.”
“Google has relegated its motto to nearly an afterthought, and is using its size to do evil upon competitors, innovators, customers, and users in a slew of markets it has grown to monopolise,” it says.
Epic Game reached out to phone-maker OnePlus to make its games available “seamlessly” on their devices.
“But Google forced OnePlus to renege on the deal, citing Google’s ‘particular concern’ about Epic having the ability to install and update mobile games while ‘bypassing the Google Play Store’,” it said.
Google also prevented LG from adding Epic Games software to its devices, the document revealed.
What did Google say?
Google pointed out that users can potentially install apps from other places, saying that using the Google Play store is an “option.”
It added: “The open ecosystem on Android allows developers to distribute apps through multiple app stores.”
Google made “clear policies” fair to game developers who want to use the Play Store and keep the store safe for users.
While Fortnite remains available on Android, Google said they can no longer make the game available on Play because the developer violated the policies.
What did Apple say?
Apple said that Epic has had apps on the App Store for a decade. The tech giant said the developer benefited from the ecosystem of the App Store. These benefits include the tools, testing, and delivery that Apple offers to all developers.
Epic readily agreed with the terms and conditions of the App Store. The developer built such a productive partnership with Apple, the tech giant said.
According to Apple, the developer’s commercial interests are now pushing them to lobby for a special deal. Epic’s “special arrangement” did not change the fact that these guidelines create a level playing field for all developers and make the store safe for all users.
Apple assured it would make every effort to work with Epic to resolve these violations so they can return Fortnite to the App Store.