The verdict to test Apple-Epic Games is largely in Apple’s favor

the good test of Apple-Epic Games about Apple’s control of its own App Store and otherwise it’s unfair monopoly now there’s a judgment, and it’s not good for Epic Games.

Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers ruling in favor of Apple in almost every count. Epic Games has asked to prove that the tech giant’s App is a monopoly, causing consumers to price higher and forcing developers to follow all of its laws to allow Apple mobile devices.

Gonzalez Rogers decided that the App Store was not a monopoly and that Apple should not be punished for its success. And while the court has forced Apple to allow developers to tell app users about the options on how they can pay for subscriptions and in -app purchases – it can be so (and in some cases case, initially reported as) a win for Epic – Allows Apple to continue most of the App Store practices that Epic has struggled to stop.

“The Court has favored Apple in all cases except in part for violating California’s Unfair Competition law (Count Ten) and only in part in terms of claiming it for Declaratory Relief,” the judge wrote.

But you don’t have to do his word for it; Epic and Apple’s statements also show which side is the favored judge.

“Judging today is not a victory for developers or for consumers,” Epic CEO Tim Sweeney tweet. “Epic is fighting for fair competition between in-app payment methods and app stores for a billion consumers.”

“The court confirmed what we knew before: the App Store is not in violation of antitrust law,” Apple said.

A major factor in the judgment is what is meant by the “market” that Apple is said to have a monopoly on. This is an remaining test point: Apple argues that the market is all gaming platforms; Epic says the market is just Apple’s App Store. Gonzalez Rogers said at the time of settlement that he thinks the market could be all mobile gaming, which will include other mobile platforms and stores like Google Play. And that’s what he meant by his judgment. It’s hard to prove that Apple is a monopoly when it comes to the definition of the market judge including its rivals.

One win that Epic Games has achieved is a limited one: Although Gonzalez Rogers opted that Apple should allow developers to display links to app users where they can purchase outside of the App Store (the purchases are not available to Apple), Epic is even allowed to not include its own payment method in the app itself, nor can it install its own app store on Apple devices.

“This measured remedy will increase competition, increase transparency, increase consumer choice and information while preserving Apple’s iOS ecosystem with competitive reasons,” the judge wrote.

But Apple has already decided (or is already are powerful pressured) a few weeks ago to end its ban on telling users they could purchase subscriptions and in-game items outside of the App Store. So this judgment hasn’t really changed anything for Apple right now, and companies like Epic and Spotify already is on the record telling the ability to tell customers about their alternatives is not enough.

Regarding Epic’s other claims, Gonzalez Rogers said the company was “over-reaching” and could not prove that Apple was a monopolist. That doesn’t mean Apple isn’t a monopoly, nor is there one more complaint that can’t make a better argument that it is. Gonzalez Rogers added: “The trial record is not as complete with respect to antitrust conduct in the relevant market as it once was.” The 30 percent commission that Apple will take on most subscriptions and in-app purchases, he said, “appears arrogant” and “possibly anticompetitive.” However, since Epic didn’t challenge the commission amount (just the fact that there is one), he won’t be able to manage it.

So this is a civil lawsuit not the last word on Apple and antitrust. U.S. lawmakers and regulators, as well as in many other countries, are forcing Apple to revise what they see as possible violations of their antitrust laws. Apple is one of several Big Tech companies that have partnered with the Biden administration’s push for more antitrust, with it teaching Big Tech critic Lina Khan is the chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The issue is also bipartisan: Republican and Democratic the legislators are vocal opponents of Big Tech and have started with introduce new antitrust bills that target it, while state attorneys general accompanying on report to Google for antitrust violations several times in the past year. Facebook has also been sued for antitrust violations by the FTC and almost all states – even the court version of the state’s attorney general. thrown out.

Si Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who makes antitrust at Big Tech one of her main issues, said the ruling has shown that more antitrust laws are needed.

“App stores are raising serious competition concerns,” Klobuchar said in a statement. “While the ruling addresses some of the concerns, more needs to be done. We need to pass federal law on app store ethics to protect consumers, improve competition, and promote innovation. ”

Spotify, which is a powerful voice in Apple App and complained about it of the European Union’s antitrust enforcement commission, said it was pleased with part of the ruling that said Apple’s conduct was anti-competitive and prohibited its counter-guiding rule, and hoped it would lead to a number of decisions that like this.

“These and other developments around the world show that there is a strong need and energy for legislation to address this and many other unfair practices, designed to hurt competition and consumers,” the leader said. of global affairs and chief legal officer Horacio Gutierrez. a statement.

As for Epic’s stunt which started all of this – setting up a direct Fortnite payment system that violated App Store rules, being obtained from iOS and macOS devices – the judge ruled in Apple’s favor. Not only did he declare Apple’s decision to terminate its agreement with Epic “valid, lawful, and enforceable,” he also ordered Epic to pay Apple damages: 30 percent of the revenue collected through the prohibited direct payment system from August 2020 installation to date.

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