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Epic vs Apple


Starhawk
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It’s almost as if Epic predicted this course of action. That takes some balls on Apples part to remove Fortnite altogether. I can only imagine the number of parents wondering why their kid can’t play one of the most popular online games of the time all of a sudden. 
 

This gonna be good...

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1 hour ago, Eldorado said:

It’s almost as if Epic predicted this course of action. That takes some balls on Apples part to remove Fortnite altogether. I can only imagine the number of parents wondering why their kid can’t play one of the most popular online games of the time all of a sudden. 
 

This gonna be good...

 

They removed it from the app store, pretty sure anyone who had it downloaded can still play.

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1 hour ago, Eldorado said:

It’s almost as if Epic predicted this course of action.

 

Ya think?

 

Typically, I’m an Apple guy, but I think the company’s App Store policies are blatantly anti-competative. I don’t know what the outcome of this suit will be, but I will be watching with great interest.

 

I will say this though: between scammy App Store games with atrocious micro-transactions, its rejection of all game streaming services, and now the delisting of Fortnite, Apple is making a clear case that their mobile platform is not a great place for gamers. And I say this as a subscriber to Apple Arcade.

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it will be interesting to see what happens when it comes to this case from a legal perspective. The 30% is a ridiculous number, but they agreed to the TOS. Apple can then point to the deals they made with other companies to allow sales on their platform at lower rates. You can bet amazon is not paying apple 30% of their prime store sales on the Apple TV.

 

Epic also can't say they are a monopoly in mobile as they only have 27% of the cell phone market, and they can choose to go to another platform(which also just removed it from the gplay store) . Players can also buy the in store currency on other platforms and it will show up in their games. That's how amazon got around Kindle and Audible subs.

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1 hour ago, JoeyN said:


and all google has to say is “ there are other ways to install on our devices”.

 

like I said it’s gonna be interesting to see what happens. 


They've tried that already & lost in the EU. There are other ways to install, but they wont' allow other stores to be installed by default on Android phones sold by carriers. So still anti-competitive. Have you seen Google/Android's antitrust lawsuits in the EU? They don't have a leg to stand on either. 

Epic's stressing continually in their paperwork that they don't want a sweetheart deal under the table. They want fairer terms for every third party. Epic don't need to do any of this, they're fucking ridiculously rich already and have a pipeline that's only going to make them richer, at this point. 

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Good quote pulled out by a dev mate, from the lawsuit: 
 

Quote

Epic is not seeking monetary compensation from this Court for the injuries it has suffered. Nor is Epic seeking favorable treatment for itself, a single company. Instead, Epic is seeking injunctive relief to allow fair competition in these two key markets that directly affect hundreds of millions of consumers and tens of thousands, if not more, of third-party app developers


We should all be cheering for this, unless there's some pernicious customer facing issue out of all this I can't see. 

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21 minutes ago, AlbertA said:

Tim Sweeney has been taking about this for years, also a harsh critic of Windows RT for the same reason. I guess they finally have the big bucks to do the legal fight.

 

Tim's unapologetically a libertarian but with strongly public positive attitudes. He's bought up tens of thousands of acres to give to the National Park Service for perputity without strings. He's talked up this shit for years if you pay attention. 

 

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Yes, agreed that I want gaming to be better supported on iOS including streaming services and Apple should absolutely offer better terms on the revenues split at this point since they do it now for “select” partners. I couldn’t care less about Fortnite but, this fight will be interesting to watch as it might lead to more options for devs and therefore more gaming options for us. 

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Forgive me guys but, for my own edification (since I haven’t played Fortnite in years)...

  • The game itself is free on all platforms (iOS, Android, Xbox, etc) and in-app purchases for v-bucks, season passes, etc use that platforms payment method. 
  • iOS/Google Play take 30% on their platforms but, Xbox, PS4, Switch, etc take less.
  • An Epic account is required for Fortnite regardless of platform and is independent of the device (cross-platform).
  • Adding v-bucks from any platform and buying an unlock makes the unlock available on the Epic account regardless of the device used to play.

So, an iOS player who added v-bucks to their Epic account via an in-store card or some other method and bought a skin has access to that skin on iOS, Android, Xbox, etc. The argument here is that if that player chose to buy the v-bucks through in-app purchase on the iOS device it costs the player more for the v-bucks; or that Epic would receive less of the purchase cost (-30%) for those v-bucks. 
 

If that’s what this is - I’m not sure I understand why it’s a big deal. Any Fortnite player can get v-bucks from anywhere they like and redeem them regardless of the device they’re playing on at any given time right? Like buying a gift card to Amazon: I can buy a physical card at a shop and send that, or a physical or digital one through Amazon themselves and send it. Is there more to it than that? If you have v-bucks on your account are there restrictions on redeeming them on the device your playing on? Like if I bought 1000 via the Epic store, are they not available to me on Fortnite for iPhone? From what I’ve read the skin or whatever unlock is available regardless of device/platform but, I couldn’t find much on the game currency and redeeming stuff. It looks like you just redeem a code whether it’s off a physical Fortnite v-bucks card from the shop or wherever else so if a player chooses to buy it via iOS or Android instead of via Xbox, they are choosing to pay more for it right? They still have a choice though, they don’t have to buy the v-bucks on a specific platform- or do they? Is it restricted to the platform you buy the currency on or something?
 

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1 hour ago, JoeyN said:

You got it Magness. From statements from the company, they don’t want Apple to get anything.

 

Wrong.

They want the platform holder's rate to be competitive + commensurate for what the platform delivers. 

Random factoid showing the in-dealing + anti-competitiveness of the platform holders - Apple Music on Android doesn't use Google's in-app purchase API, they use their own Apple sub system. Epic is blocked from doing this. 

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Heh thanks guys :) Not trying to amp this up, just discuss it. I think I have a better understanding of the overall issue but, I’m just a little surprised that it’s this big of a news item. So, my statements above are correct as far as Fortnite and v-bucks, etc works and gamers do have a choice but, it can cost the gamer more for the same IAP depending on the platform they choose to buy from. Otherwise, Epic price the IAP’s the same for other platforms - these 2 through charge more so the IAP’s are higher accordingly. 
 

Epic’s point on this is targeted at forcing Apple/Google to lower their platform charges from 30% rather than any practical restrictions on the game or IAP’s. And more over, that App Store and Google Play standards should be consistent for all devs - no special arrangements like Amazon or Apple Music are getting in the various other platforms. 
 

This argument then carries over to game streaming services like xcloud on iOS right? Since some streaming services are allowed (ie: Netflix, PrimeVOD, etc) and get better revenue sharing deals while other services get the regular 30% deal or, are specifically blocked like game streaming services that can’t then release their apps in the stores. 

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2 minutes ago, Magness said:

Heh thanks guys :) Not trying to amp this up, just discuss it. I think I have a better understanding of the overall issue but, I’m just a little surprised that it’s this big of a news item. So, my statements above are correct as far as Fortnite and v-bucks, etc works and gamers do have a choice but, it can cost the gamer more for the same IAP depending on the platform they choose to buy from. Otherwise, Epic price the IAP’s the same for other platforms - these 2 through charge more so the IAP’s are higher accordingly. 
 

Epic’s point on this is targeted at forcing Apple/Google to lower their platform charges from 30% rather than any practical restrictions on the game or IAP’s. And more over, that App Store and Google Play standards should be consistent for all devs - no special arrangements like Amazon or Apple Music are getting in the various other platforms. 
 

This argument then carries over to game streaming services like xcloud on iOS right? Since some streaming services are allowed (ie: Netflix, PrimeVOD, etc) and get better revenue sharing deals while other services get the regular 30% deal or, are specifically blocked like game streaming services that can’t then release their apps in the stores. 

 

It's a huge big news item.

And yeah, things like xcloud are part of these 'special arrangements' that Epic is fighting against - make the platform rules consistent. 

Examples from the lawsuits - Epic claim google blocked a deal they had with OnePlus to have a preinstalled Fortnite/Epic Games launcher on new phones. Google allegedly blocked LG from doing something similar because they had signed a contract "to block side downloading off Google Play Store this year" as a OEM, and Google already reached a sweetheart side deal with Activision Blizzard, and allegedly others. 

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I guess this seems more like business negotiations or PR tactics and stuff like that than a tech news headline to me but, it’s all over every tech site right now so fair enough; it’s bigger news than I would have thought. 
 

It’s easy enough to see why Google blocking Epic from selling their game to LG to pre-load on a phone is a problem per your example. Or for Apple to be allowed to bypass Google’s IAP rules while other music streaming apps can’t per your previous post. Those seem very clear cut to me because they show double standards similar to game streaming services being blocked by Apple while TV services are not. 

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