On Monday, 3rd May 2021, Apple and Epic Games will be facing each other in Court in front of a US federal Judge, the latest stage in the Fortnite maker’s campaign to break open the iPhone’s walled garden.
This feud has been growing since last August, when Epic started a plan, known internally as “project liberty”, in which it tries to get past the restrictions that Apple places on software made for iPhones and iPads.
Epic’s founder and Chief Executive Tim Sweeney, long complained that Apple requires large companies to pay 30% of the money they receive for sales of digital goods and since last December, the smaller companies can apply for a discounted rate, which Sweeney thought was extortion.
Sweeney sent Apple a behind-the-scene-ultimatum which states, for Epic to run its own App Store for iPhones where it could take payments without any cuts. These terms were rejected by Apple.
On 13th August 2020, Epic unilaterally updated Fortnite which allowed users to buy V-bucks directly and offered a discount for those who did. Apple and Google retaliated within hours of this update by removing this game.
Epic made the feud public and reworking Apple’s famous 1984 commercial to pitch the company under Tim Cook as the new villain.
According to Court filings, Epic will present Apple’s restrictions to be acts of monopoly that is taking unfair payments from the companies who have no choice bot to accede.
Apple will fight over the matter that it is not monopolist, and that small parts of Epic’s business (in iOS) reported less than 10% of Fortnite’s revenue before it was pulled from the App. It further supports the idea that the two companies are equals.