Apple lied. Apple spent a year telling the world, the court, and the press they’d “welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else”. Epic agreed, and now Apple has reneged in another abuse of its monopoly power over a billion users.
This is another extraordinary anticompetitive move by Apple, demonstrating their power to reshape markets and choose winners and losers.
It’s also a loss for fair competition and consumer choice. The loss of Fortnite as an iOS metaverse competitor alongside Roblox and PUBG Mobile has significant implications for the evolution of the new medium of our era.
Why did Apple break its promise to allow Fortnite back under its rules? Apple cites three reasons: 1) they won, 2) Epic “statements since the court’s decision”, and 3) the way we launched direct payments in 2020.
If Apple is now blacklisting companies for making statements, where does that policy lead them? To ban Spotify? Match? The New York Times?