"Currently, when using Apple and Google payment options, Apple and Google collect a 30% fee, and the up to 20% price drop does not apply. Apple is bigger, more powerful, more entrenched, and more pernicious than the monopolists of yesteryear", Epic said in its lawsuit, filed in the Northern District of California.
Is it worth spending thousands of dollars on iPhones that come with Fortnite?
Analysts believe users of Apple devices spend the most on gaming through their purchases on the App Store, which is the largest component of the company's services segment revenue of $46.3 billion per year.
Epic enabled a feature in its app which was not reviewed or approved by Apple, and they did so with the express intent of violating the App Store guidelines regarding in-app payments that apply to every developer who sells digital goods or services.
Clearly this was not a spontaneous decision on Epic's part, and Apple and Google must have seen it coming. However, Android users can still download the game from Epic's own app launcher as the "open Android ecosystem lets developers distribute apps through multiple app stores".
"Epic is not seeking any monetary relief, but rather only an order enjoining Google from continuing to impose its anti-competitive conduct on the Android ecosystem", it said in its lawsuit.
"'Epic agreed to the App Store terms and guidelines freely and we're glad they've built such a successful business on the App Store, ' reads Apple's statement".
"Epic also attacked Apple on social media, launching a campaign with the hashtag #FreeFortnite, urging players to seek refunds from Apple if they lose access to the game, and creating a parody of Apple's famous '1984' television ad", Reuters' Stephen Nellis and Munsif Vengattil report.
Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an announcement of new products in 2018.