Epic Games has extended its legal battles in Australia to now include Google. The company has been feuding with app stores for what feels like ages in the US and Europe. In November 2020 Epic began legal proceedings against Apple in Australia and now they have added the other prominent internet company, Google, to the list.
The Fortnite developer began its campaign coined “Free Fortnite” last summer after Apple and Google began blocking the Fortnite app from their app stores. On Epic’s #FreeFortnite page they answer some popular questions from fans and explain the battle with the companies as such, “In response to Epic providing new payment choices with lower prices, Apple and Google are blocking your ability to get the latest Fortnite updates. All players should have a choice in payment providers and save up to 20%.” Originally the battle was only in the US, but it has spread across the world beginning in Europe last fall.
The newest lawsuit in Australia against Google follows similar complaints as last November’s suit against Apple, “it’s due time Apple and Google allow app makers to bypass the 30 percent cut through either alternative app stores or alternative in-app payment systems”. The antitrust complaint was filed this past Wednesday and Epic claims Google “abuses its control over the Android operating system, restricting competition in payment processing and app distribution on the Google Play Store. This harmful conduct stifles innovation, reduces consumer choice and inflates prices”.
Epic Games has been keep fans up to date with their legal struggles with their #FreeFortnite hashtag. They are doing what they can to keep fans happy through the battle, even sending iOS players V-Bucks for their troubles, “Because Mac & iOS are blocked from Fortnite updates, we’re granting a V-Bucks bonus for players on these platforms — to spend on any platform. For iOS players, the bonus received equals your current balance of unspent V-Bucks purchased through the App Store. For Mac players: Anyone that’s previously played Fortnite on Mac receives a bonus equal to your current balance of unspent V-Bucks purchased from Epic.”
In 2020 Epic was keeping people up to date on their website about what the company was going through and how they would be moving forward. Though the page hasn’t been updated since November 17, 2020 we are hopeful that they will continue keeping fans up to date now that there are new lawsuits in play.