A federal judge in California ruled in an injunction request that Apple could bar Epic Games’ Fortnite game from its App Store, but must not harm Epic’s developer tools business, which includes the Unreal Engine software used by hundreds of other video games.
Epic had sued Apple in August, claiming that the company’s 30 percent commission on some in-app purchases made through its App Store, combined with Apple’s controls over what apps users can download to their iPhones, constituted anti-competitive behaviour. The lawsuit followed closely on the heels of Epic rolling out its own payment system in the popular Fortnite video game.
Apple does not allow such alternative payment systems and removed Fortnite from the App Store and threatened to terminate Epic’s developer accounts, which would have also affected Epic’s other business of selling software used to create games. Epic moved to stop Apple from taking both steps.
The court, however, also added that Epic Games has not sufficiently addressed Apple’s counter arguments. “The equities, addressed in the temporary restraining order, remain the same,” the court said.