Epic Games against Apple: the creator of Fortnite seduces in Australia

Sarah Tew / CNET

After a series of hearings and trials that lasted nearly nine months, Apple and Epic made their final arguments in U.S. District Court in California on May 24. The two companies are now awaiting Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers’ decision, but that doesn’t mean the litigation is over. After a successful appeal Thursday by Epic, the case will soon be taken to court an Australian court.

At the center of the lawsuit is the Apple App Store. Epic’s ultra popular Fortnite launched on the iOS App Store in August after Epic integrated a direct in-game payment system that would allow it to bypass Apple’s 30% fee for App Store purchases. Epic immediately sued Apple, accusing the company of anti-competitive practices. Epic argues that the App Store is monopolistic, that developers who hope to deliver their apps to customers have no choice but to go through the App Store – and pay the associated fees. Apple is calling Epic’s trial is a marketing stunt and argues that the App Store gives developers access to a large audience of iPhone and iPad users.

In November, Epic took the issue to Australia, filing a lawsuit against Apple arguing that the iPhone maker’s practices violated Australian competition and consumer law. Apple was able to appeal the lawsuit in April, arguing the case should be settled in the U.S. District Court. Epic quickly counter-appealed, arguing that public order concerns warrant a separate trial. The Australian Federal Court ruled in favor of Epic on Thursday.

“This is a positive step forward for Australian consumers and developers who are entitled to fair access and competitive prices in mobile app stores,” said a spokesperson for Epic. “We look forward to continuing our fight for increased competition in application distribution and payment processing in Australia and around the world.”

Apple plans to appeal the decision.

“The Australian Federal Court’s initial April ruling correctly ruled that Epic should be bound by the deal it made to resolve disputes in California. We respectfully disagree with today’s ruling. and plan to appeal, ”a spokesperson said.

In addition to the United States and Australia, Epic has also sued Apple and Google in the United Kingdom and the European Union. British court in February postponed Epic’s lawsuit against Apple, believing that his courts were not the place where the problem needed to be resolved.

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Judge Rogers’ decision should be delivered in the coming months. The outcome of the US lawsuit could change everything we know about how the Apple App Store works, as well as the Google Play Store. Rogers could force Apple to ignore its app security concerns, allowing other app stores and payment processing in its devices. Legal experts, lawmakers and regulators are watching closely, seeing the case as a first glimpse of how antitrust laws might apply to tech giants.

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