Decision made on Epic Games’ lawsuit against Apple. It applies to all iPhone and iPad users

Judge Yvonne Gonzales-Rogers ruled in Epic Games’ case against Apple. This lawsuit is historic as it is a big game changer in the App Store.

The judge found that Apple has an anti-competitive policy in the App Store, prohibiting developers from accepting payments directly bypassing the billing system built into the store. The decision states that Apple no longer has the right to prevent developers from adding buttons, links or other calls to action to applications that direct customers to additional payment mechanisms for purchases. ” The court separately points out that it was unable to establish whether Apple is a monopoly in the mobile app store market under federal or California state laws.

Thus, developers will be released from the obligation to use billing built into the App Store for making payments in their applications and games. They will be able to use any payment system (and most of them charge much lower fees from payments than Apple).

The same decision states that Epic Games was contractually bound by Apple when it introduced an alternative payment method to the Fortnite game, and is therefore obligated to pay more than $ 3.5 million in lost profits to Apple – that’s 30% in excess of the amount that the players managed to pay before the game was removed from the App Store.

The decision will enter into force after 90 days, that is, from December 9. During this time, Apple must make changes to the rules and the operation of the App Store, but the company still has the right to challenge this decision in a higher court (or at least postpone an appeal for these changes for several more years).

An Apple spokesman commented on the publication The Verge the decision of the court for some reason in an extremely positive manner. According to him, the court heeded the company’s arguments and confirmed that Apple is not a monopoly, and therefore the business practices adopted in the App Store do not violate antitrust laws.

Even before the court ruled this decision, Apple, under pressure from the Japanese regulator, allowed owners of services with media content from the beginning of 2022 to redirect users to their sites to subscribe and buy content (and without having to pay 30% of App Store billing). This exemption does not apply to in-game purchases.

If Apple does not challenge the court’s decision, developers will be able to charge for digital content and subscriptions bypassing the App Store and without having to pay Apple 30% in commission. Thanks to this, they will be able to reduce prices by almost a third. Many of them, including Google, Yandex and Spiotify, have previously allowed subscribing to their sites at a lower cost than iOS apps, but Apple prohibits apps from indicating the ability to pay at lower prices with a redirect to the developer’s site.

Source: by

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