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Fortnite removed from Android Play Store and Apple App Store; Epic sues

Fortnite was removed from Apple App Store and Google Play Store after Epic released a direct payment option in-game that bypassed the respective app store’s billing policy, which allowed them to take a commission from the game’s sales.

Epic had planned to pass on the savings to the gamers by lowering the prices of items across its in-game store. Both Google and Apple charge a 30% fee on sales made on apps that are downloaded through the respective app stores, including in-app purchases.

The US-based video game publisher has also taken legal action against Apple and Google alleging anti-competitive restrictions and antitrust violations. The game is still available on Android but has been pulled from the Play Store. Epic has also laid claims that Google forced OnePlus to pull back from a deal which would’ve seen Fortnite launcher pre-installed on OnePlus devices.

The game is still available on PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC, Mac and GeForce Now, but it’s uncertain where Epic’s fight against “app tax” would take Fortnite on Android and iOS.

Since the game is blocked on the App Store, iOS users won’t be able to update to Chapter 2- Season 4, which means they won’t be able to access any new game features or maps that are rolled out. Users can, however, still continue playing Fortnite if they already have it on their iOS device.

Epic also released a parody of the 1984-inspired Macintosh commercial, taking a jibe at the Cupertino-based tech titan.

“Apple has blocked Fortnite from the App Store, removing everyone’s ability to install and update the game on iOS devices, while instructing Epic to remove the ‘Epic direct payment’ feature. Apple is keeping prices high so they can collect 30% of your payments, and is blocking Fortnite in order to prevent Epic from passing on the savings from direct payments to you,” Epic Games announced.

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