Apple has been dealt a major blow in its ongoing trial against Fortnite-maker Epic Games.
Oakland, California – A judge ruled that Apple can’t stop developers of apps directing users towards third-party payment options.
Apple argued that every app should be able to use its own payment methods within the application.
However, the judge did not agree that Apple was a Monopoly.
Epic Games challenged Apple’s 30% cut on purchases in a highly publicized trial. They argued that Apple was monopolistic and the App Store was not open to competition.
Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers issued a permanent order Friday stating that Apple cannot prohibit developers from linking to their purchasing systems.
A movie streaming service, for example, will be able tell its customers that they can subscribe through their own website without having to use Apple’s in app purchasing system.
Epic also sued Google for its Play Store.
Apple’s closed payment system makes it hugely profitable, even though the tech company doesn’t know how much.
This ruling basically states that Apple can’t ban developers communicating with customers. Apple didn’t allow companies to inform consumers that there may be cheaper alternatives.
Epic argued against this and suggested that developers be able inform customers that purchases could be made outside of the App Store.
It is possible to succeed
Epic was not able to prove that it operated an illegal monopoly, which resulted in Apple’s win.
Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers stated that Apple enjoys a substantial market share exceeding 55%, and exceptional high profit margins.
However, he added that these factors do not prove antitrust conduct. “Success is legal.”
Apple spokesperson said that the Court today confirmed what Apple had known for years: The App Store does not violate antitrust laws.
Apple faces fierce competition in all segments where we do business. We believe that customers and developers will choose Apple because of our superior products and services.”
Epic Games chief Tim Sweeney stated that the decision was not a victory for consumers or developers and pledged to continue fighting.
The ruling today is not a victory for either developers nor consumers. Epic fights for fair competition between in-app payments methods and app shops for one billion users. https://t.co/cGTBxThnsP
— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic)September 10, 2021
Spotify, a music streaming service, stated that it was pleased by the decision to declare Apple guilty of anti-competitive conduct. They have also permanently banned their anti-steering provisions.
The decision is likely to be appealed by either side.
Apple shares have fallen by 3% in the wake of this decision. This has wiped out billions of dollars.
Publited Fri, 10 Sep 2021 at 16:53.43 +0000