24 Feb 2021 2:34 PM +00:00

Apple Has Requested That Epic’s Restraining Order Be Denied; Epic CEO Tim Sweeney Responds

Things are heating up in the ongoing lawsuit between Epic Games and Apple following the removal of Fortnite from the App Store.

Apple’s legal team has filed legal papers requesting that Epic’s temporary restraining order (TRO) be denied, arguing that Epic has for years enjoyed the benefits of what it now calls Apple’s “monopolistic” business practices.

The motion also claims that Sweeney requested “a special deal for only Epic.”

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On Twitter, the Epic Games CEO has responded by sharing a series of emails that — in his words — prove Apple’s statement to be “misleading.”

“You can read my email in Apple’s filing, which is publicly available,” Sweeney said.

In outlining his intentions to add a direct payment option in Fortnite, and thereby violate Apple’s non-negotiable developer agreements, Sweeney wrote: “We hope that Apple will also make these options equally available to all iOS developers in order to make software sales and distribution on the iOS platform as open and competitive as it is on personal computers.”

In other words, according to Sweeney, Epic Games doesn’t want to simply be the exception to the rule (like other companies, such as Amazon, have been).

“We hope that Apple will reflect on its platform restrictions and begin to make historic changes that bring to the world’s billion iOS consumers the rights and freedoms enjoyed on [Windows and macOS],” Sweeney said in an email dated August 13.

For now, Fortnite remains absent from both the iOS App Store and Google Play. But these lawsuits have far-reaching consequences for developers, the Unreal Engine, and digital marketplaces on any mobile device.