Apple Provides Temporary Access To Epic Games’ Fortnite

After a nearly two-week ban, fans of Fortnite, a video game in which players fight each other until the last one is standing, can log into the game on Apple’s sign-in system, Reuters reported.

Epic Games, the video game maker, said the Cupertino, California-based global tech company has given an indefinite extension for players to access the survival game.

The David vs. Goliath battle began last month when Epic tweeted that Apple planned to terminate its account on the App Store effective Aug. 28. The feud commenced when the Maryland-based game maker unveiled a payment platform crafted to bypass the App Store’s payment system and its 30 percent commission.

Epic filed suit alleging Apple "retaliation" claiming its practices restrict competition. Epic asked the Northern California District court to stop Apple from blocking the game.

“Apple’s removal of Fortnite is yet another example of Apple flexing its enormous power in order to impose unreasonable restraints and unlawfully maintain its 100 percent monopoly over the iOS In-App Payment Processing Market,” Epic Games wrote in the legal filing.

Apple fought back.

In response, the tech giant filed a counter lawsuit against Epic accusing the software developer of greed and deceit in the fight over the iPhone maker’s App store. Apple asked the judge to award punitive damages and end Epic’s alleged unfair business practices.

“Epic’s lawsuit is nothing more than a basic disagreement over money,” Apple said in its filing. “Although Epic portrays itself as a modern corporate Robin Hood, in reality it is a multi-billion-dollar enterprise that simply wants to pay nothing for the tremendous value it derives from the App Store.”

In advance of a hearing set for later this month, U.S. District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers for the Northern District of California issued a temporary split order and ruled that the global consumer electronics and computer software company can’t block the game maker from accessing the tools of Unreal Engine, a popular game engine developed by Epic that is used to build 3D games on Apple platforms.

Rogers also denied the game maker’s motion to restore Fortnite to the App Store.

“Epic Games and Apple are at liberty to litigate against each other, but their dispute should not create havoc to bystanders,” Rogers wrote in a ruling. “Apple has chosen to act severely, and by doing so, has impacted non-parties and a third-party developer ecosystem.”

On Thursday (Sept. 10), Epic tweeted, “Apple previously stated they would terminate ‘Sign In with Apple’ support for Epic Games accounts after Sept 11, 2020, but today provided an indefinite extension. We still recommend you prepare your accounts now for ‘Sign In with Apple’ removal.”

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