As we have covered today, the popular game Fortnite was removed from the App Store after Epic Games released an update with its own direct payment system instead of using Apple’s In-App-Purchases. Now we want to know your thoughts on this conflict between Apple and Epic Games.
Since the beginning of the App Store, Apple has been charging developers to let them create and offer apps to iOS users. In addition to an annual fee of $99 per year, Apple takes a 30% commission on each sale made through the App Store — whether from an app or an In-App-Purchase. Here’s how the company describes its sales method:
Like any fair marketplace, developers decide what they want to charge from a set of price tiers. We only collect a commission from developers when a digital good or service is delivered through an app.
However, Apple explicitly prohibits developers from evading the App Store payment system and the 30% fee. Every app that offers extra paid content must use Apple’s In-App-Purchase system, which automatically collects a 30% commission and gives the developer 70% of sales. That’s exactly what Epic Games tried to bypass with the latest Fortnite update.
Fortnite for iOS and Android were updated earlier today to include an option that let users pay for in-game items directly to Epic Games. Since this method didn’t give the 30% fee to Apple or Google, Epic Games offered the in-game items at a discount when paid using its own billing system. Apple quickly removed Fortnite from the App Store and asked the company to update the game following the App Store guidelines.
Instead of fulfilling Apple’s requirements, Epic Games has filed a civil antitrust lawsuit against Apple. The game company argues that Apple has used a “series of anti-competitive restraints and monopolistic practices.” Furthermore, Epic Games is now promoting a public campaign #FreeFortnite against Apple, which even includes a parody of the famous Apple “1984” advertisement.