Apple denies violation of court order in Epic Games lawsuit

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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iPhone maker Apple has denied violating a court order governing its App Store and urged a California federal judge to dismiss a request for contempt from Epic Games, the developer of ‘Fortnite’.

The tech giant made its stance clear in a filing to US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, who oversaw Epic’s 2020 lawsuit accusing Apple of antitrust violations due to its strict controls over app downloads and in-app transactions.

Apple’s filing criticized Epic’s attempt to obtain its “tools and technologies for free,” describing it as an effort to impose excessive control over Apple’s business operations to boost Epic’s profits.

Meta Platforms, Microsoft, Elon Musk’s X, and Match Group supported Epic’s arguments, informing Judge Rogers that Apple was “clearly violating” the court’s order.

While Epic declined to comment, Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the ongoing dispute, which is part of a longstanding conflict between the two companies.

Epic largely lost its case against Apple, but Rogers in 2021 ordered Apple to give developers greater freedom to guide app users to alternative payment methods for digital goods. The US Supreme Court in January declined to hear Apple’s appeal of the injunction order.

Epic said in a court filing last month that Cupertino, California-based Apple was in “blatant violation” of the court’s injunction. It pointed to Apple’s imposition of a 27 percent fee on developers for some purchases, which the video game maker said makes links for alternative payment options “commercially unusable.”

A similar case Epic brought against Google awaits a separate injunction affecting the Google Play Store, with a ruling expected later this year.

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