Last year, when Epic announced that players will be able to make direct payments in Fortnite, bypassing the app store’s own payment systems, Apple retaliated by banning the game from the App Store. Now, even with an antitrust law passed in South Korea, the tech giant refuses to restore the game.
What is the antitrust law in question here?
South Korea made world news when it passed a law that prohibited Google and Apple from forcing technology developers to integrate their payment systems into their applications. In August this year, US senators followed suit when they also announced legislation that will enforce similar laws, making it illegal for brands like Google and Apple to require the use of their payment systems in apps. As a result, we may see several smaller payment gateways go up, now that the playing field has leveled off a bit.
What is Apple’s stance on Fortnite?
Despite the laws being passed, Apple has refused to reset Fortnite in the app store. Their official communication in it, via Twitter, is that they do not plan to have the game on the App Store again until Epic plays “by the same rules as everyone else.”
This tweet came in response to Epic’s announcement on Twitter shortly after the new antitrust law was passed in South Korea. They said that “Epic intends to re-launch Fortnite on iOS in Korea by offering both Epic payment and Apple payment side by side in compliance with new Korean law.”
Epic and Apple are currently embroiled in a class action lawsuit in the US.