Apple Cannot Block Epic Games’ Unreal Engine, But Fortnite Will Stay Off App Store, Judge Rules
Apple vs. Epic case continues with the first decision made by the US justice, for now of a temporary nature: Apple cannot block the distribution of Unreal Engine in its software ecosystem, but Fornite cannot return to the App Store either. And no, it is not a very wise decision: there are arguments for everything.
According to the order of a judge of the United States District Court, Apple is not allowed to retaliate against Epic Games by blocking the company’s developer accounts or preventing it from distributing the Unreal Engine graphics engine to developers who use it or want to use it, as this is damaging third parties.
“The record shows potential significant damage to both the Unreal Engine platform itself, and to the gaming industry generally, including on both third-party developers and gamers,” explains the judge, clarifying that even though Epic Games has violated the rules of the App Store with Fornite, it has not done so when it comes to the Unreal Engine. “Apple has chosen to act severely, and by doing so, has impacted non-parties, and a third-party developer ecosystem.”
The judge, therefore, adheres to the position that Microsoft showed in favor of Epic Games, which takes its first mini-point in its judicial battle against those of the apple. However, that is where the joy for Tim Sweeney’s comes, because their main claim has been dismissed: Fornite will not return to the App Store if it does not comply with the rules set by Apple.
It should be remembered that not only Apple withdrew Fornite from the App Store for breach of the contract, as Google did the same with the game in the Android store and it was in both cases, in addition, but a decision also made almost simultaneously by the attitude of Epic Games. With the exception that Android users can continue installing Fornite with hardly any complications, unlike those of iOS.