Sydney Morning Herald
has the latest chapter in the ongoing saga of the
court battle between Epic Games and Apple over Fortnite
royalties in the
App Store, whether Apple has a monopoly and all that jazz (thanks
). The new action sees Epic stating the situation
represents a violation of Australian consumer law:
Epic has long
complained that the 30 per cent cut Apple takes on all payments made through its
platform is too high. In August Fortnite, which brought in revenues of $US1.8
billion ($2.5 billion) in 2019, was removed from Apple's iPhone App Store when
Epic insisted on including its own direct payment option at a 20 per cent
discount. Epic subsequently sued Apple in California.
Now in its Australian filing, Epic claims Apple is breaching Australian consumer
law by preventing competition in its iPhone ecosystem for payment processing and
Sharemarket analysts view the legal dispute as an important test case for
Apple's services and digital payments revenue, which have become an important
driver of the $US2 trillion ($2.7 trillion) company's business.
Epic CEO Tim Sweeney told The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age that while
smartphone app stores were a novelty 12 years ago, and a 70 per cent take was a
good deal for developers, a huge chunk of the world's economy would soon be
processed through mobile platforms and change was sorely needed.
"Apple has said they have the legal right to do whatever the hell they want
because they make the devices. Under Apple's legal theory they could charge 90
per cent. The very notion that they're standing on is antithetical to free
markets and competition," he said.