UPDATE: Fortnite has now been removed from the Google Play store as well.
Google’s statement to The Verge: The open Android ecosystem lets developers distribute apps through multiple app stores. For game developers who choose to use the Play Store, we have consistent policies that are fair to developers and keep the store safe for users. While Fortnite remains available on Android, we can no longer make it available on Play because it violates our policies. However, we welcome the opportunity to continue our discussions with Epic and bring Fortnite back to Google Play.
It’s been an interesting 12 hours in what appears to be the beginning of a long battle between Epic Games and Apple.
Epic Games announced late last night that it would offered a discounted option for Fortnite V-Bucks in-app on the App Store. This was to circumvent Apple’s cut of 30% of any purchase made in the app store. Naturally, this caused Apple to remove Fortnite from the App Store, making it unable to be purchased on iPhone/iPad.
Apple provided the below statement to The Verge: Epic has had apps on the App Store for a decade, and have benefited from the App Store ecosystem – including it’s tools, testing, and distribution that Apple provides to all developers. Epic agreed to the App Store terms and guidelines freely and we’re glad they’ve built such a successful business on the App Store. The fact that their business interests now lead them to push for a special arrangement does not change the fact that these guidelines create a level playing field for all developers and make the store safe for all users. We will make every effort to work with Epic to resolve these violations so they can return Fortnite to the App Store.
This has led Epic Games to file a lawsuit against Apple alongside the social media campaign ‘#FreeFortnite’. Epic Games seemingly had a social campaign ready to go, headlined by a video that mocks Apple’s famous 1984 TVC.
This is the message that the video conveys:
“Today, we celebrate the anniversary of the platform university directive. For years, they have given us their songs, their labour, their dreams. In exchange, we have taken our tribute, our profits, our control. This power is ours and ours alone, we shall prevail”
“Epic Games has defied the App Store Monopoly. In retaliation, Apple is blocking Fortnite from a billion devices. Join the fight to stop 2020 becoming “1984”. #FreeFortnite”
Took a little bit of re-editing – all the shots are there, just in a slightly different order – Fortnite 2020 vs Apple 1984. Audio from the Fortnite 2020 verison. #freefortnitepic.twitter.com/2WPGs6WlFj