NIXSolutions: Epic Games Requests Court to Enforce Ruling on Apple’s App Store Policies

Epic Games has petitioned Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers to uphold her 2021 ruling on alternative payment systems within the Apple App Store. The company contends that Apple’s recent adjustments to fees for external payments continue to exhibit anti-competitive conduct.


Epic’s Allegations and Supporting Evidence

Epic argues that Apple’s new policy, which levies a 27% fee (or 12% for small developers) on transactions outside the App Store, contravenes the essence of the court’s original decision. The company presents testimonials from industry figures such as Christian Owens of Paddle and Benjamin Simon, the mind behind Down Dog fitness apps. These testimonials highlight disparities in pricing between iOS and web versions of apps, supporting Epic’s claim of unfair treatment.

We wrote that Epic further asserts that Apple’s insistence on a specific button design for alternative payment links contradicts the court’s stance against developer restrictions. According to Natalie Muñoz, an Epic representative, Apple’s policy effectively eliminates the option to direct users to external payment systems, as exemplified by the Android version of Down Dog.

Interpretation of the Court Order and Expert Opinions

The absence of clarity in the court’s original order regarding directing users to alternative payment methods leaves room for differing interpretations, notes NIXSolutions. Consequently, Apple’s actions may be deemed non-compliant with the court’s directives. Experts, including former DOJ lawyer Daniel McCuaig, opine that the court is unlikely to uphold Apple’s imposition of a 27% fee.

Epic Games’ request for the enforcement of the court ruling underscores ongoing tensions between app developers and platform operators regarding fair competition and pricing policies within digital marketplaces.