Last week, Apple and Google pulled Fortnite from their app stores after its owner, Epic Games, tried to bypass their systems to eliminate a 30 percent commission on user transactions. Epic Games installed an alternative payment method, which allows players to save money. Is this the end of the online app store monopoly?
This feud between Epic Games and Apple is the latest in a series of fights over App Store policies. Content creators have harshly criticized the 30 percent commission charged by the iPhone maker and its process for removing apps from the store. According to an estimate by Sensor Tower, an app analytics firm, in the past 30 days, Fortnite has accounted for US$1.2 billion in spending in the App Store and has been installed more than 133 million times on Apple devices.
However, Reuters analysts estimate that in this lawsuit, Google has a better chance than Apple to defeat Epic Games, since the creator of Fortnite separately sued Google and Apple in a US district platform. But what is its advantage? While Apple requires that all apps be installed through the App Store, Google allows that process to be done through several different app stores, in one of several policy differences that could help it successfully defend against accusations of monopolistic actions.
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