🎮 Epic launches an antitrust crusade against Apple
Who’s most capable of forcing change among the world’s biggest tech companies? If you say Congress, guess again. It might be the video game industry.
The makers of Fortnite have sued Apple and Google: Epic Games didn’t want to pay the 30% fee Apple and Google charge developers on all revenues made from app store purchases. So Epic created its own in-app payment system to get around the fee. Then, Apple and Google kicked Fortnite out of their app stores. Epic responded with a lawsuit and a campaign particularly targeted at Apple.
Epic’s stand is about revealing the power of Apple as much as it is about money: The antitrust lawsuit accuses Apple of wielding monopolistic control over the iOs app distribution and payment process, leading to fewer profits for app developers and higher prices for consumers. That accusation should sound plenty familiar to people keeping an eye on Apple and other companies, which have faced numerous similar lawsuits.
This couldn’t come at a worse time for Apple
CEO Tim Cook was grilled by Congress last month over antitrust concerns, including possible anticompetitive behavior regarding the restrictions it applies on other companies. Epic is claiming that’s exactly what Apple is doing to app developers.
Don’t expect Apple or Google to back down anytime soon. They don’t want to give in to antitrust litigation because of everything swirling around them. And Epic Games appears to be in it for the long haul, too. The company said in its Apple lawsuit it is not seeking monetary damages or special treatment. It said it wants injunctive relief to bring fair competition for everyone.