The ongoing legal dispute between Epic Games and Apple has hit a new point as the Fortnite developer has approached the European Union with a formal antitrust complaint.
Epic Games has filed a complaint within the EU against Apple stating that the company “has not just harmed but completely eliminated competition in-app distribution and payment processes.” Announced today, Epic Games believes that Apple’s practices block competition and is in breach of EU competition law.
“What’s at stake here is the very future of mobile platforms.” Epic Games founder and CEO Tim Sweeney said today. “Consumers have the right to install apps from sources of their choosing and developers have the right to compete in a fair marketplace. We will not stand idly by and allow Apple to use its platform dominance to control what should be a level digital playing field. It’s bad for consumers, who are paying inflated prices due to the complete lack of competition among stores and in-app payment processing. And it’s bad for developers, whose very livelihoods often hinge on Apple’s complete discretion as to who to allow on the iOS platform, and on which terms.”
The latest filing with the EU is another complaint filed by Epic Games. It joins the legal action Epic has taken in the US and in Australia over the course of many months. Additionally, Epic filed with UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal.
Epic Games has been vocal in its criticism against Apple’s App Store policies and mandatory 30 percent cut on in-app purchases since Fortnite was taken off the App Store. In August of last year, Apple removed Fortnite after Epic Games implemented a portal for players to purchase V-Bucks directly in the game as a way to bypass Apple’s commission structure. Google also removed Fortnite from the Google Play Store for the same reason. Epic then retaliated by creating online marketing, including the Free Fortnite campaign and filed a lawsuit against Apple and Google.
As for the filing in the EU, Epic hopes to see “timely and effective remedies” put in place. The company is not seeking damages from Apple in the EU filing, nor the US, Australia, or the UK. The Fortnite developer merely wishes to see “fair access and competition”.
At the time of writing, the European Commission has not provided public comment on the filing.