We have an update on the legal fight between Epic Games and Apple from Epic’s chief CEO, Tim Sweeney, following a judge’s judgment early last week and a noteworthy injunction. Sweeney acknowledged the continued tense relationship between the two firms in a Twitter thread today, suggesting that Apple will not be bringing Fortnite back to the App Store in the near future. “Apple lied,” he claimed at the start of his thread.
Apple would “not reinstate Epic’s developer program account at this time” and “will not consider any requests for reinstatement until the district court’s judgment becomes final and non-appealable,” a process that could take years. This announcement follows Epic Games’ filing of an appeal of the lawsuit’s ruling. Because such appeals might take years to resolve, don’t anticipate being able to download Fortnite or any other Epic product on an Apple device until the final judgment is reached.
Late last night, Apple informed Epic that Fortnite will be blacklisted from the Apple ecosystem until the exhaustion of all court appeals, which could be as long as a 5-year process. pic.twitter.com/QCD7wogJef— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) September 22, 2021
Sweeney’s accusation of Apple’s deception originates from the initial verdict in Epic’s lawsuit. “Apple spent a year telling the world, the court, and the press they’d ‘welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else,’” Epic’s founder and CEO said in a tweet. Epic agreed, and now Apple is abusing its dominant power over a billion people by reneging.” In Fortnite, Epic had enabled payment options outside of the iOS ecosystem, culminating in a lawsuit between the two firms over whether Apple was breaking anti-trust rules by monopolizing the game market.
Epic’s CEO wrote a letter to Apple Fellow Phil Schiller in which he stated that Epic had paid Apple millions of dollars as a result of the legal struggle, but that Epic had also “disabled Epic payments server-side.” Apple was ordered in an injunction to allow third-party payment systems to be utilized in apps, which was set to take effect on December 9th, though Epic’s appeal is still pending.
With additional legal battles looming between the two companies, it’s no surprise that Apple has decided to hold off on enabling Epic to bring games like Fortnite back to iOS. For the time being, we only know that nothing will change in terms of Epic games on Apple devices. You’ll have to play Fortnite on one of the numerous other platforms that support the popular battle royale game.