Apple vs. Epic: Stakes and Echoes of an Extraordinary Trial

Apple vs Epic Business News: Stakes and Echoes of an Extraordinary Trial Version Published on May 4th, 2021 at 8:00 p.m. After months of waiting, the trial version between Apple and Epic is finally opening. There is a lot at stake. If Tim Sweeney’s company wins, it could shake up the iPhone maker’s famous 30% commission in its store, or even impose its own store for iOS. A violation that would pave the way for many technology companies as well. We explain the operations in this case to you. For this May 4th, dedicated to the power of force on the planet Star Wars, two giants clash in a battle as explosive as Star Wars. The lawsuit between Apple and Epic Games was finally opened yesterday. The company, which has the origin of the Battle Royale Fortnite, condemns the apple, which fills its pockets abundantly via its online shop, the App Store, with too high a “tyrannical tax” of the company. More specifically, Epic condemns the 30% commission – reduced to 15% for companies making less than $ 1 million a year – that Apple puts in for the slightest sale of applications or for in-app purchases (built right into software) his business has collected. For its part, Google uses identical rules for Android. Epic and the company with the famous search engine will be the subject of a second lawsuit against the manufacturer of the iPhone for the same reasons as those cited today. Fortnite (promotional images) The lawsuit is barely opened, but it’s been months since Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games, publicly pointed his finger at the brand’s policy on the apple. Last June, the man evoked Apple’s “absolute monopoly” in relation to his own store. In the App Store, the company is both “judge and party”, summarizes CNews: “It lays down the rules, receives commissions for transactions and at the same time offers its own applications. “An almighty law that is often denounced. Until recently, the European Union accused Apple of anti-competitive practices following a complaint filed by Spotify. At the same time, Tim Sweeney has formed a coalition that advocates more fairness in stores like the App Store and the Play Store. Other tech companies have joined him. Sales platforms for iOS and Android are an important topic for them: there are currently 1 billion iPhone users worldwide.

Trojan horse

In this long-term battle, Epic appears as a sort of Trojan horse paired with a white knight: the company appears ready to do whatever it takes to fight GAFAM’s policies, even if it means playing big. In July last year, Epic Games released an update for the Android and iOS versions of Fortnite, with the aim of directly bypassing the 30% commission charged by Google and Apple. With the smallest purchase (skins, virtual currency), players were redirected to the Epic site and even benefited from a 20% reduction. From there everything speeds up. Apple is removing Fortnite from the App Store (players who have already downloaded it and then still have access), and Epic files a complaint the same day. Google is following suit, although the title remains available through the browser on Android. Then, in a very symbolic gesture, Tim Sweeney draws a parody of a famous Apple advertisement from 1984. The video ends with a clear message: “Epic Games has defied the monopoly of the App Store. In retaliation, Apple is blocking Fortnite’s access to one billion devices. Join the fight to keep 2020 from turning to 1984 (borrowed from Georges Orwell’s dystopian novel, editor’s note). “As a last point, a hashtag: #FreeFortnite. 1984 – Epic Games parodies the famous Apple commercial

“Free Fortnite”

A hashtag that encouraged many gamers to express themselves last year and that resonated on the very grounds of the court where the Apple-Epic trial is taking place. While it is possible to follow the case over a public line, due to a minor technical error, the microphone of 200 spectators stayed open for twenty minutes, as claimed by The Verge. Enough time to let go of some “free fornite”, “put the game back on your phone, please” or even the voice of Travis Scott, an artist who gave an impressive in-game concert last April. A special prelude to an equally important study in which Apple boss Tim Cook will testify directly in the coming weeks. Fortnite (screenshots) Tim Sweeney has already been voiced in connection with the case. As reported by the New York Times, the CEO reminded, among other things, that his legal action is aimed at “exposing the consequences of Apple’s policy”. A policy that Epic Games attorney Katherine Forrest immediately referred to as a “walled garden.” According to her, consumers and developers on iOS are trapped from the inside out and forced to use the Tim Cook company’s payment system. The lawyer is based on a series of emails exchanged between various Apple executives. Apple’s defense – known to be particularly impressive – confirms that the 30% commission is in line with industry standards (especially on the Google Play Store). According to the company, the money will help keep the app store running smoothly and keep users safe.

End of season

Obviously, the process promises further strong moments, and the first resulting documents are already circulating on the internet. We now know the astronomical sums that Epic is ready to offer its users games, or how many billions Fortnite generated between 2018 and 2019. But it is the outcome of the fall that is most expected. As The New York Times reminds us, if Tim Sweeney’s company wins, it will turn a $ 100 billion application economy on its head and prevent millions of companies and developers from paying 30% of their sales to Apple. Conversely, if the company with the apple is the winner, its monopoly status will be strengthened. The process is expected to take three weeks. By then we should have an answer. By Indee, journalist MP

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