It was probably nice to have a few days off from the Epic Games vs Apple conflict, right? But grab some popcorn and maybe a fresh pastry, because the show is not over. Apple is now seeking redress for Epic’s breach of contract, responding to Epic’s recent requests to be forced to reintroduce Fortnite. This is a juicy one, I’m not going to lie.
If you want to see where the whole mess started, I recommend reading this, this or that. Long story short: Epic tried to get around the App Store payment system within Fortnite, Apple banned Fortnite, and Epic̵
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Now Apple is throwing itself some legal punches. The filing, which was entered into earlier this week, seeks compensation for Epic, which is in breach of the agreement by introducing its own payment system, and requests that Epic be kept away from further unfair practices. It sums up Epic’s efforts as follows: “Epic’s intention is thus straightforward: It seeks free access to the Apple-supplied tools it uses and – even worse – it will then charge others for access to Apple’s intellectual property rights and technologies. ”
Apple also responded to Epic’s latest legal filing, requesting an order forcing Apple to reintroduce Fortnite. I want to save you the details … just kidding, no I do not want to. Epic’s injunction asks Apple to be legally restricted from removing or modifying Fortnite in the App Store, claiming that “Fortnite is more than just a game.” It claims that Apple has “split millions of users from its friends and family” by cutting access to Fortnite on iOS. This is the argument in a nutshell:
Daily active users on iOS have dropped by over 60% since Fortnite’s removal from the App Store. And removal has already resulted in the loss of goodwill and irreparable damage to Epic’s reputation. The continued loss of Fortnite as a gathering place for users on all platforms will lead to Epic’s customers becoming defective. Epic will never see these users again. It will also be denied the opportunity to access a single new user among the one billion plus iOS users in the next year.
My favorite part of Epic’s injunction is when it says “It’s most likely [Apple will] lose this case. “Yes, keep telling me that. It also says, “The user’s screams have been deafening” regarding Fortnite ban, which is extra funny because Epic has desperately tried to get users’ screams to even create their own hashtag that follows the ridiculous “Nineteen Eighty-Fortnite” video.
Apple’s answer to this? According to the submission, “Epic’s lawsuit is nothing more than a fundamental disagreement over money. Although Epic presents itself as a modern company Robin Hood, it is in fact a multi-billion dollar business that simply will not pay anything for the enormous value it receives from the App Store. “And wow, get me the giant bottle of cream for that incineration. It also adds, ‘There’s nothing anti-competitive in charging a commission for others to use the service.'” It also added that Epic boss Tim Sweeney asked for a “side letter” in June that would essentially allow it to run a competing app in the App Store and make a “complete run” around Apple’s fees. is “demanding a regressive” per download fee, leaving consumers and developers on the hook to pay for what would otherwise be billions of free app downloads. “
This is my favorite part, if not just because of “just so done with this” attitude Apple copping:
While Epic and the CEO take issue with the terms that Apple has provided the App Store to all developers since 2008, this does not provide coverage for Epic to break binding contracts, defraud a longtime business partner, pocket commissions that rightfully belong to Apple, and then ask this court to take a legal hammer to one of the 21st century’s most innovative business platforms simply because it does not maximize Epic’s revenue. In some ways, the App Store has revolutionized the market and benefited greatly from consumers and app developers like Epic. Apple looks forward to defending Epic’s baseless claims.
I’m not trying to take sides in this dispute between big companies over a bunch of money, but my day, the end.
Just as Epic continues to repeat “Apple maintains an illegal monopoly” as an argument, Apple continues to repeat “Epic brought this on itself with the nonsense” in response. I do not want to be a judge who has to read the many, many variations of these two sentences, honestly. I’m very lucky I can be on the sidelines and devour treats.
In the meantime, if you were wondering how the heck Google is in all this – it’s apparently trying not to be in it at all. Google sent its own injunction and mainly asked to keep the cases Epic vs Apple and Epic vs Google separate, as the problems with Epic are different from Apple. There is a legitimate reason, do not misunderstand me, but there is something about Google asking to be left out of the media circus this case has become (says one of the junior leaders).
Epic has a little over a week to respond to Apple’s archiving.
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