EPIC Vs Apple: Judge says customers should be allowed to shop outside App store

In a verdict that can have a long term impact on Apple, a judge in the United States has directed that Apple can no longer force developers to use its payment system in its App Store. In other words, developers could now redirect consumers to other payment methods for mobile apps.

The verdict of US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers came after the court agreed with the arguments put forth by Epic Games, the maker of the popular game 'Fortnite', which had last year sued Apple over its App Store policies. 

Epic had moved the court after it was removed from the App Store for updating the 'Fortnite' game with its own in-app payment system.

Stating that Apple's policies illegally stifle consumer choice and hide critical information from consumers, the judge directed Apple to implement the changes within three months.

At the same time, Judge Gonzalez Rogers directed Epic to pay Apple $3.6 million for violating App Store policies last year.

Apple takes a hit
   
The Federal judge order saw Apple's business take a hit with its stock dipping by 3.3%, erasing its market capitalisation by about $85 billion.

However, Apple believes that the verdict largely favoured the company.

The company highlighted the part in the verdict where the judge stated that Apple does not have monopoly power and that success is not illegal.

The verdict revealed that 70 per cent of the revenue of the App Store is derived from gaming apps and that 80 per cent of the other apps are free.

During the trial, Apple CEO Tim Cook had taken the stand and defended his company's practice of charging 30 per cent cut of revenue from purchases in apps distributed through the App Store. That percentage was revised to 15 for applications with less than a million dollars in annual net sales.

Epic says it will keep fighting

Epic Chief Executive Officer Tim Sweeney took to Twitter after the verdict where he said that it was neither a win for developers nor for consumers.

Stating that it was fighting for fair competition among in-app payment methods and app stores, Epic said that would file an appeal over the ruling.

Also Read: Facebook launches Ray-Ban smart glasses for $299, bring cameras, speakers; but no AR



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