Apple fights back against Epic's lawsuit over Fortnite, seeking damages

Criticized them as "sneak assault" and "commission-theft".

Engadget JP (Translation)
Engadget JP (Translation) , @Engadget_MT
2020年09月9日, 午後 05:32 in egmt
Epic Games

This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl.

As the battle with Epic Games over Fortnite continues, Apple has filed a new lawsuit against Epic, seeking damages. Previously, Epic had sued Apple for an injunction against the removal of the app (for the return of Fortnite to the App Store), but now Apple is fighting back.

The dispute between Apple and Epic began on August 13, when Epic implemented an update to Fortnite's in-app purchases that added the direct payment (an option that allows users to pay Epic directly and at a discount) to avoid the 30% App Store fee. When Apple removed this from the App Store as a violation of its guidelines, Epic immediately filed a lawsuit.

According to CNBC, in the lawsuit, Apple is claiming that Epic breached its contract and is seeking to return the full amount that Fortnite collected through Epic's own payment system (not through the App Store) and a permanent injunction banning Epic's external payment mechanism for all apps, including Fortnite.

The former of these is not all of the sales on the App Store (more than $600 million, according to the complaint), but rather the money made in the hours between the addition of the direct payment option within Fortnite and its removal from the store. The amount isn't specified in the complaint, but we're guessing it's not too huge. Rather, it seems that the latter statement banning external payments like this one for "all apps, including Fortnite" is what Apple is really aiming for.

More interesting is Apple's statement accompanying the complaint. It completely rejects Epic's claim (#FREEFORTNITE) that Epic's lawsuit is "the fight for freedom from Apple's control" (#FREEFORTNITE) as "Epic's lawsuit is nothing more than a basic disagreement over money. Furthermore, Apple stressed that Epic's aim is only for private profit and lining its pockets, saying that “Although Epic portrays itself as a modern corporate Robin Hood, in reality it is a multi-billion dollar enterprise that simply wants to pay nothing for the tremendous value it derives from the App Store.”

To add insult to injury, Apple also revealed that Epic executives “recognized and thanked Apple for its support and promotion of Fortnite events” as recently as April 2020, and also criticized the addition of the direct payment option to Fortnite as "a sneak assault on the App Store" and "its hidden commission-theft functionality".

Meanwhile, Epic has asked the court to reinstate Fortnite to the App Store without removing direct payment, and has renewed its determination to free consumers and developers from Apple's "monopolist" restrictions on in-app purchases (banning direct payments). It seems unlikely that the two companies, who call each other "monopolists" and "thieves," will come to a compromise for some time.

Source: CNBC

This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl. The Japanese edition of Engadget does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of this article.

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