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Apple ordered not to block Epic Games’ Unreal Engine, but Fortnite to stay away from App Store – TechCrunch

Apple ordered not to block Epic Games’ Unreal Engine, but Fortnite to stay away from App Store – TechCrunch

A district court rejected Epic Games’ proposal to temporarily restore the Fortnite game to the iOS App Store, but also ordered Apple not to block the gaming giant’s ability to offer and distribute Unreal Engine on the iPhone maker’s ecosystem in a mixed ruling issued Monday night.

U.S. District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers said Apple could not retaliate against Epic Games by blocking the gaming company’s developer accounts or restricting developers on Apple platforms from accessing the widely used Unreal Engine tools.

“The order shows potentially significant damage to both the Unreal Engine platform itself and to the gaming industry in general, including both third-party developers and players,” she said, adding that although Epic Games violated the App Store guidelines, it did not break any Unreal-related contracts Engine and developer tools.

“Apple has chosen to act seriously, and in doing so has affected non-parties and a third-party developer ecosystem,” Rogers said.

But the ruling was not a complete victory for Epic Games, which had also requested that the dormant hit title Fortnite be restored on the iOS App Store. Rogers said the game would remain outside the App Store unless Epic Games tried to bring it back in line with the App Store guidelines.

Monday’s ruling limits – for the time being – the public battle between the giants Apple and Epic Games over the basic rules in the iPhone’s App Store. Epic broke Apple’s and Google’s app store guidelines earlier this month when it allowed Fortnite users on iOS and Android to pay directly.

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Apple and Google require developers on their platforms to use their respective payment processing systems and comply with a commission – which for games is 30% of the transaction amount.

Epic’s move prompted Apple to remove Fortnite, perhaps the best-selling mobile game to date, from the App Store. In anticipation of what Apple will do, minutes after Fortnite was picked up from the App Store, Epic Games filed a lawsuit against Apple and kickstarted one of the weirdest – or boldest (depending on who you ask) marketing campaigns.

The next day, Apple informed Epic Games that, based on a breach of the App Store policy and the developer program license agreement, they would revoke all developer tools, which would preclude updates for other programs, including Unreal Engine, by August 28. a lawsuit against Apple.

Unreal Engine is a popular suite of game development tools. In recent years, their offerings have become so compelling that they have been used in commercial movies and TV series, such as Disney +’s The Mandalorian.

Epic Games claimed last week that developers had already left Unreal Engine as there was uncertainty about the future of the Apple ecosystem. Kevin Gammill, Microsoft’s general manager for Gaming Developer Experiences, declared his support for Epic in an additional file attached to Epic’s request for a restraining order over the weekend.

Phil Spencer, the boss of the Xbox, too twitret: “[…] We submitted a statement in support of Epic’s request to retain access to the Apple SDK for Unreal Engine. Ensuring that Epic has access to the latest Apple technology is right for game developers and gamers. “

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It is worth pointing out that Microsoft and Apple are locked in a separate side battle.

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