The protracted legal dispute between Epic Games and Apple has reached its conclusion as the appeal requests from both parties were declined by the US Supreme Court. The district court’s ruling in Epic’s antitrust lawsuit against Apple now stands as the definitive decision and will be implemented in accordance with the law.
Dispute between Epic Games and Apple
For those who haven’t been following the three-year legal saga, it’s important to provide some context. It all began in 2020 when Epic Games discreetly included a direct purchase option in Fortnite Mobile, leading Apple and Google to remove the game from their app stores. This move effectively denied both companies their usual share of the revenue.
In response, Epic filed antitrust lawsuits against Apple and Google, accusing them of engaging in monopolistic practices. The legal battle between Epic and Apple lasted for a year, with both sides exchanging legal blows. Eventually, the case culminated in a high-profile trial where a U.S. district court ruled in favor of Apple. However, the court also issued a permanent injunction preventing Apple from blocking third-party in-app purchases (IAPs).
Both Epic and Apple appealed the district court’s decision to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld the ruling. The case then made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which recently rejected both appeals and granted the permanent injunction.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney issued a statement in response to the decision:
- “The Supreme Court has rejected appeals from both sides in the Epic v. Apple antitrust case. The legal battle to open iOS to competing stores and payments is lost in the US. A sad outcome for all developers.”
- From now on, developers can begin to exercise their court-ordered right to tell American consumers about better prices online. These terrible screens imposed by Apple are over forever. The fight continues. Regulators are taking action and politicians around the world are taking new laws to end Apple’s illegal and anti-competitive practices in its app stores. The European Union Digital Markets Act comes into force on 7 March.”
Epic, however, was able to achieve an absolute victory in its re-suit against Google when a US district court found the latter guilty of monopolistic practices. Google will also appeal this decision.