Fortnite will not be returning to the iOS App Store for the foreseeable future, according to a series of emails posted to Twitter yesterday by Tim Sweeney of Epic Games.
The bitterness between Epic and Apple has grown so great that only changes in law and judiciary can bring them back together.
The Epic developer account was suspended on iOS due to the company’s breach of App Store guidelines in August 2020, paving the way for the lawsuit between the two companies. In the wake of the ruling, it was unclear whether or not Fortnite would return to the App Store. The situation for other Epic apps is also unclear after Apple also closed the Epic developer account, which in effect means the end of the Epic Games Unreal Engine on Apple platforms – and with it all games from Epic – unless the Open App Markets Act passes. .
When Apple goes to the Unreal Engine, they hit more than Epic. Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen as well as many architectural firms use it to visualize projects. Another notable example is The Weather Channel’s viral “mixed reality” where they mix effects and visuals from simulated natural disasters commented from the studio, all using the Unreal Engine. A number of Unreal Engine users need to publish material to the App Store.
ITavisen wrote about this and the Open Application Markets Act in the widely discussed and still current article Epic is forever banned on all Apple platforms.
Emails posted yesterday on Twitter as well as in a blog post from Epic, indicate that it is unlikely that Epic Games’ various apps will return to the App Store in the foreseeable future. In a letter posted by Sweeney — dated September 21 and signed by an Apple attorney — Epic was informed that Apple would not restore the Epic developer’s account until the case was finally closed. This process may take several years. This is despite the fact that Epic has already paid out for breach of contract.
full declaration of war
Apple has exercised its discretion and has decided not to restore the Epic developer account at this time. Apple will not process further restoration requests until the ruling is final and can no longer be appealed.
The message corresponds with the judge in Epic vs. Apple Case, Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers Conclusion: Apple has the legal right, in its sole discretion, to terminate all accounts related to Epic on the App Store.
Without a developer account, Epic is locked
Appeal in the case is still pending. Epic has announced that it intends to appeal parts of the ruling, but the Supreme Court has yet to agree to address the appeal. Apple also said it was still studying the possibility of an appeal, but Apple’s Tim Cook told employees he was “looking forward” after the ruling.
“Breach of Promise”
Sweeney tweeted that Apple’s refusal is a betrayal of its previous promise to take back Epic Games once the company agrees to follow the guidelines for the App Store.
Apple lies. They’ve spent a year telling the world, the court, and the press that they “will welcome Epic back to the App Store when they agree to follow the same rules as everyone else.” Epic agreed and now Apple has again misused its monopoly power over a billion users.
Apple declined to comment on Sweeney’s tweets, but according to The Verge, they don’t question the authenticity of the documents.
Apple circumvents law change in South Korea
The decision appears to halt Epic’s attempts to relaunch Fortnite on the App Store in South Korea after the country recently adopted rules requiring support for alternative payment methods. It also puts a bold question mark on the future of Fortnite on the iOS App Store in the rest of the world. Epic recently removed the ability to pay for V-Bucks via alternative channels in older versions of Fortnite, and in theory brought the game into line with Apple’s rules. But without a working developer account, Epic cannot restart the game in any country.
ITAVISEN: South Korea adopts anti-Google/Apple law
Keeps pressure on Apple
The decision to release the emails publicly shows that Sweeney continues to put pressure on Apple, although it also means that Fortnite is not into one of the iPhones in the world.
We keep fighting. The need for regulatory and legal action is greater than ever.
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