having a split congress means you only need a couple of senstors in pocket.
I would suspect being unable to update the iOS versions of Fortnite might, oddly enough, be linked to it having been removed from the app store and their account being banned. If their account were reinstated and Fortnite allowed back into the store, I don't know what technical hurdles would remain preventing them from updating it.
edit: Sweeney wrote: "Though we can't update the Fortnite version that users still have on their iOS devices, we've disabled Epic payments server-side[...]". This reads to me that he's stating how things are currently. That, they don't have a mechanism to update Fornite. Doesn't even read that they won't, if able to.
Therefore, while they can't publish a new version at the moment because their account is disabled, they have zero intention of publishing a new version under the current iOS App Store rules.
The version they were talking about publishing is a new Mac App Store version. I'm curious if people have any good hypothesis on why they would do this, as Epic wants to run their own store and be the one earning commissions.
> Accordingly, a nationwide injunction shall issue enjoining Apple from prohibiting developers to include in their: Apps and their metadata buttons, external links, or other calls to action that direct customers to purchasing mechanisms, in addition to IAP.
> Nor may Apple prohibit developers from: Communicating with customers through points of contact obtained voluntarily from customers through account registration within the app.
Full ruling [PDF]: https://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/21060696/epic-v-apple...
The ruling also gives Apple 90 days to decide the exact specifics of how it will comply with the ruling, and until then, the Fortnite app's code would remain out of compliance with the current rules until they are updated within the 90 day period. Since Epic does not commit in their letter to Apple to removing that code, to comply with the rules as they are today, of course Apple chose not to accept them back into the store. If Epic had unwound their willful violation of the rules as they are today, they would have met Apple's stated terms for having developer services restored and likely would not have been asked to wait.
Aside from the guidelines change, does the ruling specifically compel Apple to set aside Epic's contractual violation, or is Apple allowed if they so desire to simply let stand their standard normal permaban for "you knowingly lied to Apple and broke the rules" as the rules were defined at the time?
This is in the linked thread.
But, if the legal challenge is ongoing, then I am skeptical that they've really agreed to anything. Writing an email to Apple saying "I agree to your terms" while continuing to fight in court over those terms is not an agreement of anything.
Apple is in my opinion correct that Epic is still looking for that rock, and is not bound to respect what Epic says while it does so.
>They don't have to break the ToS to get the ToS changed.
Might have been a good idea for Epic to consider that prior to doing so.
Especially since the court ruled Epic violated them once before.
Frequently these cases are appealed and new terms introduced to the judgement. Apple doesn’t want to give away any negotiating position until this is fully resolved.
As an app developer it simply makes me not want to work with Apple at all, but of course I'm forced to for some reason.
Or a $99/year fee to give away FOSS projects...
IMHO, if the commission of Apple or any other rule is to be changed, it should change for everyone(a regulation maybe?). I hated it when Epic simply steamrolled the external payment rule. I don't like others getting away with stuff simply because they can, I find it unfair.
Apple could have let it happen, then maybe a few more giants like Netflix, Google and Amazon would have done and as a result we would end up with 2 tier business environment, like the way it is for most of the stuff outside of the AppStore.
I’m annoyed when they sherlock someone but not when they stick to the agreement they made with the developers.
In the US its practically 50/50, and being forced to write off 50% of the US, who have no other way to install your app, is ridiculous. And a 30% cut is absolutely massive, for comparison, Walmarts profit margin in 2020 was 3%.
That it has been allowed to continue this long is simply a failure of government.
Note that comparing markup to profit margin is apples and oranges. Comparing to a particularly low-margin provider is perhaps misleading, too.
BTW the %30 is fine considering the service they give. They handle the international trade part of the business, which is vastly different from what Walmart does. If you were to sell directly to customers, you would have to incorporate in each and every country there is(because you need to pay taxes and comply to the laws where your clients are), which is something that Epic can do but small developers can’t. Thanks to Apple, a kid with a computer can directly compete against international corporations. Also, Apple provides many if the technology that enables these apps. There’s no comparison between what a supermarket does and Apple does.
A free market would figure out what the real fair percentage really is.
Apple is a gatekeeper that no one who is buying their phones cares about. People buy iPhones because their friends have iPhones, that's it. But Apple treats developing for Apple as a special privilege and locks down their massive ecosystem. It should be illegal at the scale Apple has, but it isn't.
So yes, we are forced to work with Apple in order to be competitive in industries that Apple has no business controlling. You don't have that problem with whatever you develop because (presumably) Microsoft doesn't exploit Windows' market advantage in the way Apple does.
I don't buy Apple devices primarily due to the way they administrate the app store and how they treat developers.
I would consider buying an iPhone otherwise.
So yes, there are people who care.
It is a choice you make, but with significant business consequences.
Fortnite has 116 million iOS users, and a lot of them are pretty into the game. I don't think keeping Fortnite off iOS is going to have an immediate impact on people's buying decisions, but each time a dispute like this happens, more and more people are going to take notice of the fact that they can't play Fortnite on an iPhone, they can't buy a Kindle book on an iPhone, etc. I doubt any of these individually amount to a purchasing decision, but over time Android might be seen as more broadly useful.
But this case isn't over. There's almost certain to be an appealed. Apple wants to maximize their position in the event the next judgement is less favorable. And the short-term cost of users and revenue is worthwhile hedge against the unknown.
I see where Apple said everybody should play by the same rules but given that Epic not only violated the policy (which has now been changed) but also purposely cheated on the review process it seems justified that they are still banned.
Apple, however, maintains it’s under no obligation to let Epic in the App Store at all. “As we’ve said all along, we would welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else,” an Apple spokesperson says in a statement to The Verge. “Epic has admitted to breach of contract and as of now, there’s no legitimate basis for the reinstatement of their developer account.”
So it sounds like it was in a statement to The Verge that was split into parts for the article and Tim is cherry picking the part that suits Epic. Seems impossible for Epic to play by the same rules as everyone else and be allowed back in since they broke more rules than the one that has now been changed. They really should have tried a legal approach first before sneaking their app store in.
Per-employee, Valve is the most profitable company in America, and Gabe Newell the 97th richest American. They got there with forced exclusives (Half Life 2 could only be activated on Steam) and simply being first to market. They are no longer even bothering to curate their storefront.
Everybody prefers Steam to EGS not _only_ because they're stuck there, but because it's genuinely a better product. It's golden handcuffs, but a fantastic product nonetheless.
In my opinion Valve has found the perfect balance between making gamers, a notoriously difficult category of people hard to please, happy and making serious money. Laughing all the way to the bank while single-handedly improving the status of Linux gaming and desktop in general. I'm more than OK with that.
Additionally I don't think it helps their public image and hurts the case they are making where they don't need regulation because they have fair rules (smacking someone out of the app store forever because they file a lawsuit wouldn't pass the smell test)
Why would Apple ban a potent revenue source?
Apple has no reason to do them any favors.
I don't play games on iOS, I don't even develop on iOS, either.
I do use both iOS and Android as a consumer, and I'm totally team Tim Sweeney on this one, even though I also own AAPL — my freedoms as a consumer are more important to me than whoever is bankrolling this case and what their reasons may be. Besides, their reasons aren't that bad, either, and closely align with mine — more choice for the consumer.
The Netflix app never had an Apple payment method. The first screen is the login screen with no way to sign up at all and no explanation how or where to do it.
The entire mobile ecosystem is full of user-hostile business models and behavior.