FORTNITE AXED FROM GOOGLE PLAY STORE APP JUST AFTER EPIC GAMES FIGHT BACK OVER APPLE REMOVAL OF FORTNITE FROM ITS APP STORE
The crackdown for breaking platform rules saw Fortnite axed from the search and Android giants’ app marketplace days ago. This comes as the Android version of the subject app was booted recently by Apple from its App Store as a result of misconduct over the seizure of chunk of fees payable to Apple on transactions in its mobile ecosystem. However, the move from the later tech company saw Epic Games pick a fight with Apple.
In the same vein, the latest move taken by Google could see the creator of Fortnite game run-in with a sledgehammer since these tech giants platform constitutes a major proportion of its market. The mobile game developer had on last week Thursday added a direct payment option to its subject mobile game, a violation implemented to duck Apple’s hefty developer fees while offering mouth-watering 20% discount that should be handed over to Apple or Google as its intermediaries for players who pay the company for its virtual V-Bucks.
Prior to the latest development from Google, Apple claimed that the company had removed Fortnite for moving in a direction it classified as the “unfortunate step”, viewed as violation of its App Store rules in which it stated that:
“Epic enabled a feature in its app which was not reviewed or approved by Apple, and they did so with the express intent of violating the App Store guidelines regarding in-app payments that apply to every developer who sells digital goods or services.
Epic has had apps on the App Store for a decade, and have benefited from the App Store ecosystem – including [its] tools, testing, and distribution that Apple provides to all developers. Epic agreed to the App Store terms and guidelines freely and we’re glad they’ve built such a successful business on the App Store. The fact that their business interests now lead them to push for a special arrangement does not change the fact that these guidelines create a level playing field for all developers and make the store safe for all users. We will make every effort to work with Epic to resolve these violations so they can return Fortnite to the App Store”.
Meanwhile, Fortnite axed by the Android giant became the latest, however, Google in the same vein defended its decision as a move to address the violation of its platform rules, stating that:
“The open Android ecosystem lets developers distribute apps through multiple app stores. For game developers who choose to use the Play Store, we have consistent policies that are fair to developers and keep the store safe for users. While Fortnite remains available on Android, we can no longer make it available on Play because it violates our policies. However, we welcome the opportunity to continue our discussions with Epic and bring Fortnite back to Google Play”.
But, before the takedowns by both tech giants actually took effect, Epic wrote in a blog post introducing the new option, stating: “Currently, when using Apple and Google payment options, Apple and Google collect a 30% fee, and the up to 20% price drop does not apply. If Apple or Google lower their fees on payments in the future, Epic will pass along the savings to you”.
It’s evident, Epic strategically took this step in a bid to entice and encourage more players.
In another dimension, there seems to be a concern when apps like Fortnite is allowed by Google to be sideloaded outside of Google Play, which presents a different experience that is totally less smooth coupled with this warning about malware.
Currently, Epic has filed a lawsuit against Google, pointing at the company’s old “Don’t be evil” mantra with an allegation that the company violated antitrust rules by “using its size to do evil upon competitors”, although the subject game – Fortnite is still available, but not via Google’s App Store but through Epic directive and supported devices. Epic on its website points players to a direct download through QR code and is also available on supported devices via Samsung’s Galaxy Store.
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