“Fortnite” creator Epic Games is gearing up for an honest confrontation against Big Tech and it is gaining support from other well-known app developers in the process.
Spotify Technology Inc. SPOT,
and Match Group Inc. MTCH,
Recently issued statements in support of Epic, having filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc. AAPL,
and GOOG of Alphabet Inc.,
Google late on Thursday accused the monopoly practices.
The tech giants, representing two of the world’s dominant smartphone operating systems, have pulled “Fortnite” from their app store for violating their rules of in-app payments after Epic tries to lower in-game currency prices for players who have bypassed Apple and Google with purchases.
“We fully support Epic Games’ efforts … to show how Apple uses dominance and unfair policies to harm consumers, app developers and entrepreneurs.” a Match Group spokesman said in a statement Thursday. “Regulators around the globe have expressed similar concerns and are looking at” what some have described as “arbitrary Apple operations.”
A Spotify spokesperson said the company was “welcome[s] Epic Games decided to go against Apple and shed more light on Apple’s abuse of its dominant position. “The online music giant argued in a statement Thursday that” Apple’s unfair practices are at a disadvantage to competitors and take consumers too long. ”
Facebook Inc. Also joined the criticism, with an executive telling Bloomberg News that Apple was not 30% free or allowed Facebook to use its own payment tool on a new feature that the media giant society is rolling out. allows businesses to host virtual events. According to Bloomberg, Alphabet is also not free but will allow Facebook to use its own payment processing engine, and Facebook will not cut revenue from the feature.
Microsoft Corp. had weighed even before Epic saga after Apple determined that the company could not list its xCloud game streaming service in the App Store as Apple would not be able to review all games offered through service. Microsoft argues that Apple “always treats gaming applications differently, applying more tolerant rules to non-game apps even if they include interactive content”, according to a report. statement cited by The Verge.
Both Apple and Google keep up to 30% of all digital goods purchases made in apps downloaded through their app stores, a fact that is receiving increasing opposition. increase from developers and government officials. Spotify filed an antitrust complaint against Apple in Europe last year, arguing that the company’s App Store payments policies make it difficult for other apps to compete effectively with Apple Music.
Regulators are looking at the activities of Apple’s App Store, which was also the focus of antitrust hearings in the House of Representatives last month. Lawmakers questioned Apple CEO Tim Cook about the company’s App Store “pricing” and what would prevent the company from further cutting App Store-related purchases.
Read more: Antitrust questions put Big Tech CEOs in trouble during historical hearing
Apple said in a statement Thursday following the deletion of “Fortnite” that its App Store guidelines are “designed to keep the store safe for our users” and that the company “will make efforts” it is best to work with Epic to resolve these breaches so that they can return “Fortnite” to the App Store. “
Match Group, which operates Tinder and other dating apps, could be the primary beneficiary of more developer-friendly app store approaches, analysts said. In general, developers pay Apple a 30% cut in digital services revenue for the first year of recurring subscriptions and 15% for all remaining years, but many dating app users don’t. Sign in to premium plans for years, which means Match can regularly pay 30% more full than some other developers.
Apple shares have risen 48% in the past three months with the Dow Jones industrial average,
has increased 18%.