Microsoft’s Xbox Backs Fortnite and Epic Games in Apple Lawsuit

Xbox head Phil Spencer says the company is backing Epic Games in its lawsuit against Apple.

“Today we filed a statement in support of Epic’s request to keep access to the Apple SDK for its Unreal Engine. Ensuring that Epic has access to the latest Apple technology is the right thing for gamer developers & gamers,” said Spencer on Twitter.

Apple plans to shut down all of Epic Games’ developer accounts by next week, which means the latter will be unable to update its Unreal Engine for iOS and Mac devices. This would result in developers of games using Unreal Engine being left without support.

“Denying Epic access to Apple’s SDK and other development tools will prevent Epic from supporting Unreal Engine on iOS and macOS, and will place Unreal Engine and those game creators that have built, are building, and may build games on it at a substantial disadvantage,” reads the statement of support.

“Because iOS is a large and growing market for games, Apple’s discontinuation of Unreal Engine’s ability to support iOS will be a material disadvantage for the Unreal Engine in future decisions by Microsoft and other game creators as to the choice of an engine for new games,” adds the Xbox court filing.

On Friday, Apple shot back at Epic Games’ lawsuit with a court filing detailing the latter wanted its own special deal from the iPhone maker. Epic Games introduced its own payment system last week in Fortnite to avoid paying Apple its 30% App. Store cut.

Apple quickly removed Fortnite, which resulted in the latter suing Apple, alleging the iPhone maker was being anticompetitive.

The filing from Microsoft and Xbox comes alongside an Epic Games filing on Sunday which says Apple is holding the Unreal Engine hostage and affecting developers that rely on the latter.