In response to Epic’s decision to implement a bypass of Apple’s in-app payment system in Fortnite, Apple has removed the game from the App Store.
Apple said in a statement sent to The Verge: “Today, Epic Games unfortunately violated the App Store guidelines, which are equally applicable to every developer and are designed to ensure the safety of the store for our users.” Yes, their Fortnite app has been removed from the store. Epic has enabled features in their app that have not been reviewed or approved by Apple, and their express intention to do so is to violate App Store guidelines regarding in-app payments. Applies to every sale Developers of digital goods or services.
Epic has had apps on the App Store for ten years and has benefited from the App Store ecosystem, including the tools, testing, and distribution that Apple provides to all developers. Epic agrees to the App Store’s terms and guidelines for free, and we are very happy that they have established such a successful business on the App Store. The fact that their business interests now push them to promote special arrangements does not change these guidelines to 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 that they can return Fortnite to the App Store.
The epic CEO Tim Sweeney has been vocally criticizing Apple’s closed system, and this new payment method is clearly designed to encourage users to bypass Apple’s payment system (and cut 30 %). This is a positive move by Epic, and this is a very significant and positive response from Apple.
What happens next is everyone’s guess, but Epic doesn’t seem to be ready to back down: it just made fun of a new short film “Nineteen Fortress,” which will debut today at 4 pm Eastern Time, and it seems to be Quoting this famous Apple advertisement.
Epic Games permanently reduces the cost of Fortnite’s V-Bucks currency, as long as you purchase it through one of its preferred payment methods. Starting today, any V-Buck you buy on PC, Mac, PlayStation, Xbox or Switch will be automatically discounted “up to 20%”.
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Starting today, V-Bucks’ mobile device costs should also be reduced. Epic is launching its own payment method, Epic Direct Payment, which plans to circumvent the 30% fee normally charged by Apple and Google.
If you buy V-Bucks on iOS or Android through the App Store or Google Play, you won’t be able to get the savings, but a post on the Fortnite website explains: “If Apple or Google reduces their payment fees in the future, Epic will save Pass on the money to you”. You can find more information about Epic Direct Payment in this official blog post.
The price cut feels like a catapult for Google and Apple, and better virtual currency exchange rates are beneficial to players. In addition, if you have purchased V-Bucks in the past 30 days (between July 14 and August 13), Epic will refund 20% of your total purchase amount as a V-Bucks bonus. In addition to V-Bucks, Epic also provides a pickaxe for all active Fortnite players for free.