A U.S. judge ruled in favor of Epic Games in its September 10 lawsuit against the Apple App Store, ordering the tech giant to dismantle some of its restrictions to make it easier for software developers to avoid pay commissions.
Apple charges up to 30% on all digital transactions within apps on its platforms.
The case was a limited victory for Epic Games, which makes the popular video game Fortnite, as the judge dismissed claims that the company runs an illegal monopoly that stifles competition and innovation.
The Fortnite maker filed what it hoped would be a landmark antitrust case last year, in an attempt to label Apple a “monopolist.”
U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers’ ruling also provided Apple with some rationale by not forcing Apple to allow competing stores to carry apps for iPhone, iPad, and iPod.
But the judge admitted that Apple had engaged in unfair competition under California law and ordered the company to allow American software developers to insert links to payment options other than its own. in iPhone applications.
The change could potentially affect billions of dollars in annual revenue for Apple, a prospect that rocked investors and caused the company’s shares to fall nearly 3% on Friday.
Apple’s general counsel, Kate Adams, said the company was “very happy with the court’s decision and we consider it a huge victory for Apple.”
“This ruling validates that Apple’s success is not illegal, as the judge said,” she added.
However, Apple said it could appeal the part of the ruling that will make it easier for developers to bypass its commissions.
The US judge also ruled that Epic Games broke its contract with Apple when Fortnite added a non-Apple payment system to its app. She urged Epic to pay Apple $ 3.1million, or 30% of the revenue it collected while violating the tech giant’s commissions.
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