Tech giant Apple and Epic Games, a company known for designing battle royale game Fortnite, have locked horns over an anti-trust case for months. The legal dispute revolved around Apple charging a substantial commission on digital transactions made on apps on the app store.
A federal judge, on Friday, ruled on the case and directed Apple to decommission a part of the competitive barricade that protected its app store.
According to US media reports, the recent ruling is likely to give app developers significant financial room while deciding the selling price of a product on Apple’s App Store and could drive the charges down.
Subscription-based platforms like Netflix and Spotify are likely to be a part of such transactions that attract commissions, which can be as high as 30%.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeny, in a tweet on Friday, said that the recent ruling is not a win for developers or consumers. He said Fortnite will return to Apple’s app store once it can offer competitive in-app payments. “We will fight on,” he added in a subsequent tweet.
Since that trial ended three months ago, Apple has taken two steps to loosen some of its app store rules — one to settle a lawsuit and another to appease Japanese regulators without altering its commissions. Those concessions make it easier for many apps to prod their users to pay for digital transactions in ways that avoid triggering Apple’s fees, according to reports from Associated Press.
According to Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, the United States District Court Judge, from California’s Northern District, Apple had violated the states Unfair Competition Law by forcing Fortnite and its maker Epic Games to use Apple’s payment systems on the App Store, where the iPhone maker extracts a 30% commission on every in-app purchase in the process, according to Associated Press inputs.
(With AP inputs)