Apple plans to claim to face strong competition in the video game market and that players would suffer if Fortnite developer Epic Games succeeds in its legal battle to overturn Apple’s App Store policies, according to court documents filed by the company on Thursday, reiterating allegations that The lawsuit is part of a carefully curated PR campaign to revive interest in Fortnite.
Apple unveiled its plan to attack Epic in charges filed with a California federal court on Thursday ahead of a juryless trial in early May, resisting allegations of anti-competitive behavior, arguing that the 30% levy it imposes on developers is standard across the industry.
The argument rejects Epic’s claim that more than a billion iPhone users, who must use the App Store to install software, are an independent market over which Apple has control, saying players and developers have the ability to use games on multiple platforms.
Although Apple’s 30% commission on App Store sales is charged through the App Store, Apple said players have the option to purchase in-game items on other platforms for use on the platform.
Apple also said that the billions of dollars it spends on developing the infrastructure that supports the App Store justifies its compensation, adding that Epic “benefited greatly” from this arrangement and earned more than $ 700 million from its users in the two years that the popular Fortnite game was available in the store.
The tech giant has also criticized a dirty public relations campaign launched by Epic in a lawsuit, which was internally known as Project Liberty, and portrayed the company as an understater fighting Apple’s oppression.
The outcome of this lawsuit could determine the future of the digital market and is part of a litany of investigations and lawsuits that call into question the reach of high technology. Apple, and especially its role as a gatekeeper for which applications can appear on its devices, has been the focus of growing regulatory control and criticism from developers and competition regulators around the world. The European Commission, for example, has opened four antitrust investigations for Apple, three of which include the App Store. Epic led private-sector opposition to Apple’s practice, which is now part of a larger movement of technology companies including Spotify, Match Group and Tile.
Fortnite maker Tim Sweeney rates Apple’s declining revenue and competitive practices as “absolutely disgusting” (protocol)
Top US news releases join coalition challenging Apple’s 30% App Store fee (Forbes)
Apple says Epic’s suit is really an effort to revive “interesting interest” in Fortnite (CNET)
Apple reveals line of attack in App Store trial against Epic (Bloomberg)
Apple will claim to face competition in the video game market in the Epic lawsuit (Reuters)