Epic Games Teams Up with Developers to Take a Bigger Bite out of Apple

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In this Business Casual segment, Daniel Litwin and Tyler Kern weigh in on some updates to the public battle between Epic Games & Apple over the latter’s app store prices and practices. In retaliation to Apple’s app store fees, Epic Games and other high profile app developers like Tinder’s Match Group & Spotify formed a nonprofit called the Coalition for App Fairness; The coalitions’ goal is to advocate for developers against major tech giants like Apple, inviting companies big and small to have a stake in this fight for a fairer app marketplace.

For context, the fight between Apple & Epic Games centers around the popular battle royale video game, Fortnite. Apple’s steep 30% cut of all mobile app sales is a margin tech companies, like Epic Games, claim they can no longer afford, and they no longer want to pay. To avoid these platform fees on the app stores, Epic added an in-app payment feature to its game, circumventing Apple’s fees. It didn’t take long for Apple, and later Google, to kick Fortnite off of their stores; let the lawsuits commence! As the Business Casual hosts weigh the impact of the new Coalition, Litwin and Kern as the questions: Will this become a lobbying operation for these tech companies? Who will have more pull in this battle? Can these apps get leverage over the major tech players, and how?

KEY POINTS:

  • Epic Games, Tinder, Spotify, and more mid-tier tech companies form the Coalition for App Fairness.
  • Does Apple run unfair monopolistic policies against app developers & providers?
  • Will the Coalition’s vision for legal & regulatory changes come to fruition?

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