Fortnite vs. Apple continues to escalate with new antitrust complaint
In the latest development in its global dispute with Apple, Fortnite developer Epic Games announced earlier today that it has filed an antitrust complaint with the European Commission.
Epic describes its complaint as alleging that “through a series of carefully designed anti-competitive restrictions, Apple has not just harmed but completely eliminated competition in app distribution and payment processes. Apple uses its control of the iOS ecosystem to benefit itself while blocking competitors and its conduct is an abuse of a dominant position and in breach of EU competition law.”
This complaint follows a number of other lawsuits that Epic has launched against Apple worldwide, which revolve around the 30% fee that Apple charges on the purchase of apps and in-app payments. We’ve previously written about Epic’s original claim in California (here) and its more recent claim in the UK before the Competition Appeal Tribunal (here). On the latter we’re still waiting to see if Epic will be granted permission to serve out of the jurisdiction, following a hearing on 21 January 2021 in which judgment was reserved.
This latest development suggests that Epic has no intention of backing down in any of these cases. However this dispute ends up being resolved, it is likely to have a significant impact on the future of app stores and mobile gaming.
“What’s at stake here is the very future of mobile platforms.” Epic Games founder and CEO Tim Sweeney said today.