The ongoing legal battle between Apple and Epic Games wages on, though today Apple has secured a notable victory. Epic Games recently attempted to get a temporary restraining order from a Northern California court to prevent Apple from blocking Fortnite’s updates and terminating their developer account. However, after a hearing yesterday, a judge ruled in favor of Apple.
Obviously, Apple was pleased with the judge’s decision, but are also open to welcoming Fortnite back onto the App Store if Epic Games will remove the recently-implemented direct payment option. They said the following:
“We thank the court for recognizing that Epic’s problem is entirely self-inflicted and is in their power to resolve. Our very first priority is making sure App Store users have a great experience in a safe and trusted environment, including iPhone users who play Fortnite and who are looking forward to the game’s next season.
We agree with Judge Gonzalez-Rogers that ‘the sensible way to proceed’ is for Epic to comply with the App Store guidelines and continue to operate while the case proceeds. If Epic takes the steps the judge has recommended, we will gladly welcome Fortnite back onto iOS. We look forward to making our case to the court in September.”
While Apple is still able to follow through with their termination of Epic Games’ developer account on August 28th, the judge actually ruled against them in their request to also terminate accounts and access related to the development of the Unreal Engine. These accounts are held under Epic International, which is a separate entity from Epic Games and has a different contract with Apple.
This all leaves Epic Games between a rock and a hard place, as they either have to eliminate the direct payment option or have their account terminated entirely. Whatever they end up doing, there isn’t a lot of time left to decide. We’ll keep you posted as more information becomes available.