Epic Games Sues Apple

sc5mu93

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You buy an apple device you get apple software - kinda makes sense. That is why Grandma can actually do a video call with the grandkids. You can choose to do otherwise jailbreak for example but it then doesn't play with apple stuff on everyone elses phone. You are effectively saying that you want an to change a closed system to an open system. It exists - it's perfectly viable and available Android. This isn't 1990's MS where MS literally ran every mainstream PC device.
You buy Microsoft Windows you get Microsoft IE - kinda makes sense. I don't know how else to describe this. It is the exact same thing! Using the platform to push another to the detriment of competitors in a space that the platform provider also competes.
And yes - if it is a closed system, where the platform provider is abusing its power to the detriment of competition - yes - I want an open system. That's the whole point of antitrust law. It is based on the principles of open competitive markets making things better for and protecting consumers. "Benevolent overlord" isn't acceptable in free market.

So if you flip this around, say MS now says - "i want in on this benevolent overlord thing" and locks down windows to only installable UWP apps through Windows so they can extract their 30% tax too. You would argue say - cool, you have options. Go play on linux or MacOS right? They have more market share now vs 1990s so it is cool.
My guess that is not the answer you would say. Because it HURTS the consumer and hurts competition. But MS earned it. They made the platform and there are alternatives now. </s>

Choice is great - until there are so many choices it's a pain to get things to work. You have zoom, I have teams, they have skype, grandma has Magic Jack, Aunt Mary has Google Voice - yeah works perfect right?
Soviet Russia bread line is so great! I dont have to think to get my bread.</s> And it is cool right? you have other options. Pick up the telephone and make a call. It boggles my mind when people argue against consumer choice.
 

cybereality

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Right, so you buy a Samsung phone. Then you can only buy apps on the Samsung Store. You can only use the Samsung Browser. Makes sense, they made the phone. NOT!!! :dead:
 
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Tsumi

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You buy Microsoft Windows you get Microsoft IE - kinda makes sense. I don't know how else to describe this. It is the exact same thing! Using the platform to push another to the detriment of competitors in a space that the platform provider also competes.
And yes - if it is a closed system, where the platform provider is abusing its power to the detriment of competition - yes - I want an open system. That's the whole point of antitrust law. It is based on the principles of open competitive markets making things better for and protecting consumers. "Benevolent overlord" isn't acceptable in free market.

So if you flip this around, say MS now says - "i want in on this benevolent overlord thing" and locks down windows to only installable UWP apps through Windows so they can extract their 30% tax too. You would argue say - cool, you have options. Go play on linux or MacOS right? They have more market share now vs 1990s so it is cool.
My guess that is not the answer you would say. Because it HURTS the consumer and hurts competition. But MS earned it. They made the platform and there are alternatives now. </s>


Soviet Russia bread line is so great! I dont have to think to get my bread.</s> And it is cool right? you have other options. Pick up the telephone and make a call. It boggles my mind when people argue against consumer choice.

What does Apple have that competes with Fortnite? Or any other game for that matter? You're arguing about music player apps but are any of them involved in this lawsuit? This lawsuit is all about making more money for Epic Games, NOT about making things more open for consumer "benefit."

This is not a "benevolent overlord" argument. People pay the Apple tax because they believe it is worth the streamlined interface, integration, and that the closed garden pros outweigh the cons. App developers accept the 30% cut because it is worth reaching this group of people that choose this kind of ecosystem.

What do you lose if you switch from Apple to Android? Mostly just purchased apps. Of the purchased apps, how many would you play more than 2-3 times? Utility apps? How many people actually spend significant amounts of money on those? On the other hand, the free to play games have accounts that can transfer, so you don't lose anything there.

People will not accept a closed Windows because the pros do not outweigh the cons in that scenario. Also, there is a third option you disingenously ignored... running an older version of Windows. The market forces will not allow Microsoft to lock down Windows.
 

sc5mu93

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What does Apple have that competes with Fortnite? Or any other game for that matter? You're arguing about music player apps but are any of them involved in this lawsuit? This lawsuit is all about making more money for Epic Games, NOT about making things more open for consumer "benefit."
I was speaking to the NYTimes article in describing Apple's historic anti-competitive behavior in the past (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/09/09/technology/apple-app-store-competition.html) not specifically Fortnite.
This is not a "benevolent overlord" argument. People pay the Apple tax because they believe it is worth the streamlined interface, integration, and that the closed garden pros outweigh the cons. App developers accept the 30% cut because it is worth reaching this group of people that choose this kind of ecosystem.
Devs pay the 30% because they don't want to miss out on that market. As I have stated whoever wins the market framing argument, gets the case. Apple frames it in devices sold and the percentage thereof. Epic says it is a dollar market - Apple devices have higher software sales than Android market. Both are completely valid arguments for the framing of the market.
What do you lose if you switch from Apple to Android? Mostly just purchased apps. Of the purchased apps, how many would you play more than 2-3 times? Utility apps? How many people actually spend significant amounts of money on those? On the other hand, the free to play games have accounts that can transfer, so you don't lose anything there.

People will not accept a closed Windows because the pros do not outweigh the cons in that scenario. Also, there is a third option you disingenously ignored... running an older version of Windows. The market forces will not allow Microsoft to lock down Windows.
And thus you prove my point. The MARKET wont let MS close Windows. COMPETITION wont allow it. APPLE is closed because APPLE chooses it. In testimony, Apple gave catastrophic reasons as to why iOS shouldn't be open to other stores. All of which are entirely speculative because Apple will not allow it. Based on the fact apple provided NO developer as witness to advocate for Apple's current system, it may be inferred that the MARKET might want something different than what Apple provides. Monopolist has the power and can act irrespective of what the market wants.
 

Lakados

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In the 90s, you buy a Windows PC because it has Windows. and you get IE bundled by default.
Now, you buy iPhone because it has iOS and you get iMessage, iMusic etc by default or directed by Appstore download to the detriment of direct application competitors.

It is the same behavior. You can argue the market size (which I have said is the true focal point of this trial) but the behavior of Apple is absolutely anti-competitive and like that of a monopolist.
You’ve got that backwards, I buy it for iMessage, FaceTime, the iTunes store, etc. The fact it runs on iOS is just the bonus. If Apple were to release their first party apps for Android that would be dope.
 

sc5mu93

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You’ve got that backwards, I buy it for iMessage, FaceTime, the iTunes store, etc. The fact it runs on iOS is just the bonus. If Apple were to release their first party apps for Android that would be dope.
Well, I was just using the previous poster's comparison, but point taken. And that would be the kind of competition we should be cheering for. Not this walled in garden BS.

I feel like I am living in TRON and programs and users alike are praising our benevolent MCP for closing our system down.
 

Tsumi

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I was speaking to the NYTimes article in describing Apple's historic anti-competitive behavior in the past (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/09/09/technology/apple-app-store-competition.html) not specifically Fortnite.

Devs pay the 30% because they don't want to miss out on that market. As I have stated whoever wins the market framing argument, gets the case. Apple frames it in devices sold and the percentage thereof. Epic says it is a dollar market - Apple devices have higher software sales than Android market. Both are completely valid arguments for the framing of the market.

And thus you prove my point. The MARKET wont let MS close Windows. COMPETITION wont allow it. APPLE is closed because APPLE chooses it. In testimony, Apple gave catastrophic reasons as to why iOS shouldn't be open to other stores. All of which are entirely speculative because Apple will not allow it. Based on the fact apple provided NO developer as witness to advocate for Apple's current system, it may be inferred that the MARKET might want something different than what Apple provides. Monopolist has the power and can act irrespective of what the market wants.

If the market wanted something different, the iPhone would not be successful. App developers are NOT the market; consumers are. The fact that the iPhone and iOS are successful means that consumers embrace Apple's closed ecosystem.
 

Lakados

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Epic lost this case the second they sued Google, Android does everything that they are asking Apple to do and it still wasn’t enough for them. Epic is still going to win though, just not this case. Epic has poked enough holes that regulators are going to have to step in to create new anti trust laws and that is likely what Epic wanted all along.
 

sc5mu93

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If the market wanted something different, the iPhone would not be successful. App developers are NOT the market; consumers are. The fact that the iPhone and iOS are successful means that consumers embrace Apple's closed ecosystem.
But that doesn't preclude anti-competitive behavior. Success and monopoly are not mutually exclusive. Benevolent overlord doesn't get a pass.

And if users had choice of discount applied (due to no apple tax) for IAP, I would bet consumers would want that...so what happens to devs affects consumers too.
 
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sc5mu93

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Epic lost this case the second they sued Google, Android does everything that they are asking Apple to do and it still wasn’t enough for them. Epic is still going to win though, just not this case. Epic has poked enough holes that regulators are going to have to step in to create new anti trust laws and that is likely what Epic wanted all along.
Regulators both in US and EU were already looking at both Apple and Google, and I expect both to be cracked. Epic's arguments with Google are lot flimsier because of sideloading and the dollar amount of Andriod market.
The google case shouldnt affect this case, as they are separate and based on different facts.
 

Lakados

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Regulators both in US and EU were already looking at both Apple and Google, and I expect both to be cracked. Epic's arguments with Google are lot flimsier because of sideloading and the dollar amount of Andriod market.
The google case shouldnt affect this case, as they are separate and based on different facts.
They are separate, but Google allows side loading, separate stores, and alternate payment methods. And still wasn’t good enough so it taints their whole series of arguments. And reading some of the closing notes that are popping up all over the judge calls Epic out on it.
 

sc5mu93

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They are separate, but Google allows side loading, separate stores, and alternate payment methods. And still wasn’t good enough so it taints their whole series of arguments. And reading some of the closing notes that are popping up all over the judge calls Epic out on it.
judge calls out Apple too (e.g. salting the earth). I think the judge is pretty good, but no way does a District Judge make this call. Ultimately this will be decided on appeal.
 

Lakados

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judge calls out Apple too (e.g. salting the earth). I think the judge is pretty good, but no way does a District Judge make this call. Ultimately this will be decided on appeal.
Oh yea probably by the Supreme Court, and only after regulators have gone to town on the whole lot.
 

Tsumi

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But that doesn't preclude anti-competitive behavior. Success and monopoly are not mutually exclusive. Benevolent overlord doesn't get a pass.

And if users had choice of discount applied (due to no apple tax) for IAP, I would bet consumers would want that...so what happens to devs affects consumers too.

Again, it is not a benevolent overlord. It is a closed and managed ecosystem that consumers choose to be a part of. The Apple tax is worth it to the consumer. If it wasn't, they would choose to be part of Android and use the alternative payment system/side loading.
 

JayteeBates

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But that doesn't preclude anti-competitive behavior. Success and monopoly are not mutually exclusive. Benevolent overlord doesn't get a pass.

And if users had choice of discount applied (due to no apple tax) for IAP, I would bet consumers would want that...so what happens to devs affects consumers too.
Apple doesn't stop anyone from making (for example) an instant messenger app for iPhone and selling it in the App Store. Apple doesn't stop Skype, Teams or even Google Voice from working on an iPhone and being in the App Store. They aren't preventing competition. I just looked and Google Voice pops up in the app store...imagine that...Zoom, Discord, Teams, Skype for Business...all in the App Store just this very minute. They are charging the dev to sell on their platform that they manage and monitor.

Soviet Russia bread line is so great! I dont have to think to get my bread.</s> And it is cool right? you have other options. Pick up the telephone and make a call. It boggles my mind when people argue against consumer choice.

Again it isn't "free" to Apple to provide the App Store. There is some level of expense there. Thinking it is wrong for Apple to charge for each sale within their own infrastructure is what's communist. Then we are back to how much of a % is ok. Who gets to decide that? Dev's don't make software to lose money and if the fees were so much they lost money - they wouldn't sell on the app store.
 

cybereality

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People will not accept a closed Windows because the pros do not outweigh the cons in that scenario... The market forces will not allow Microsoft to lock down Windows.
But fundamentally, there is no difference in the argument. A mobile phone is just a mini-computer with an operating system.

By your argument, Microsoft would be in the right to lock down Windows to only buy apps from the Microsoft Store. In fact, they tried to go in this direction and failed (with UWP).

Also relevant, Tim Sweeney blasted MS for this and may have been a factor in it not getting adopted.

https://www.gamesindustry.biz/artic...asts-microsofts-aggressive-new-uwp-initiative

Valve also hedged their bets and invested heavily in Linux around that time just in case MS went through with it, also why Proton probably works as good as it does.
 

DPI

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Epic lost this case the second they sued Google, Android does everything that they are asking Apple to do and it still wasn’t enough for them. Epic is still going to win though, just not this case. Epic has poked enough holes that regulators are going to have to step in to create new anti trust laws and that is likely what Epic wanted all along.
The whole thing is one long, slow motion hail mary started in bad faith.

Epic's arguments have been so weak that it makes it hard to tell what their true endgame is. Like are they trying to fail on purpose as part of some advantage they think they'll have after it gets thrown out, or gambling their lost iOS revenues on a lottery ticket chance they get some inept jury? Won't matter, Apple would appeal forever, they'll burn Epic down financially before allowing a precedent to be set that upends their 30%.
 
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cybereality

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Epic's arguments have been so weak that it makes it hard to tell what their true endgame is.
I think their endgame is to eventually eclipse Steam, but on desktop and mobile platforms.
 

JayteeBates

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I think their endgame is to eventually eclipse Steam, but on desktop and mobile platforms.
Will not happen. Steam will be the king for the foreseeable future. Until Gabe leaves its not even going to be challenged. EA thought they could do it. MS thought about it for a half second. I have all the free games on Epic and just one purchased game...RDR2 because that was where it was at first and I couldn't help myself. I have almost rebought it on steam just so I could uninstall epic.
 

Lakados

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The whole thing is one long, slow motion hail mary started in bad faith.

Epic's arguments have been so weak that it makes it hard to tell what their true endgame is. Like are they trying to fail on purpose as part of some advantage they think they'll have after it gets thrown out, or gambling their lost iOS revenues on a lottery ticket chance they get some inept jury? Won't matter, Apple would appeal forever, they'll burn Epic down financially before allowing a precedent to be set that upends their 30%.
Apple will probably just implement some sort of tiered approach that overall lowers it a little bit while still keeping their whales to appease regulators and close any legal complaints all while only minimally affecting the stores' revenue.
 

DukenukemX

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Right, so you buy a Samsung phone. Then you can only buy apps on the Samsung Store. You can only use the Samsung Browser. Makes sense, they made the phone.
Yes but, that's wrong. I own the phone, so therefore I should have choice where to get my apps. If I can only use the Samsung Browser and get apps from the Samsung store then realistically my choice is an illusion. Unless I have money coming out my ass, I'd have to buy other products to get other choices.

Apple doesn't stop anyone from making (for example) an instant messenger app for iPhone and selling it in the App Store. Apple doesn't stop Skype, Teams or even Google Voice from working on an iPhone and being in the App Store. They aren't preventing competition.
Uh, yes they are. They're better about it today, but for a long time you couldn't use FireFox or Chrome without it working on top of Apple's browser. You still can't get emulators on the app store and I'm pretty sure Apple has issues with Cloud Gaming services since these things bypass the App Store in terms of purchasing.
 

cybereality

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DukenukemX I was being sarcastic about the Samsung comment. Obviously that would suck, sorry for not being clear.

Also, yes, Apple still disallows all other browser engines from the App Store. Even though you can download Firefox or Chrome, it is only a wrapper for Safari. There should be a second lawsuit about that, it blows.
 

Tsumi

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But fundamentally, there is no difference in the argument. A mobile phone is just a mini-computer with an operating system.

By your argument, Microsoft would be in the right to lock down Windows to only buy apps from the Microsoft Store. In fact, they tried to go in this direction and failed (with UWP).

Also relevant, Tim Sweeney blasted MS for this and may have been a factor in it not getting adopted.

https://www.gamesindustry.biz/artic...asts-microsofts-aggressive-new-uwp-initiative

Valve also hedged their bets and invested heavily in Linux around that time just in case MS went through with it, also why Proton probably works as good as it does.

Yes, I am of the stance that Microsoft can do whatever they want with their software. Here's the catch: will the market accept it that way? The resounding answer was no, and Microsoft lost revenue and trust as a result. However, was this a result of government intervention? No, it was not. Consumers decided on this. That's why I argue Apple should be allowed because that is the consumer decision. Government intervention should be used in a scenario where a large company ousts competitors and consumers have no other choice. In this case the other choice is Android.
 

cybereality

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Well you have a decent point. People like living in Apple's garden rather than roughing it out on the streets of Android.

I'd consider myself a power user, but I rarely install random APKs or use alt stores cause the few times I did they tried to hack my phone.

So Apple is not wrong. It's just that I would rather be free to make a choice (and not make it) than have no choice at all.
 

Lakados

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Well you have a decent point. People like living in Apple's garden rather than roughing it out on the streets of Android.

I'd consider myself a power user, but I rarely install random APKs or use alt stores cause the few times I did they tried to hack my phone.

So Apple is not wrong. It's just that I would rather be free to make a choice (and not make it) than have no choice at all.
I let a few users have Android phones because they made a really strong case to management on why they should be allowed, within 3 months of getting those phones, one of them was used to launch an attack on the network by using its cellular connection to bypass the firewalls and its wifi connection to get back to the network. All because of a dodgie a chat app, never again, now as a requirement, any Android-based devices brought in are locked down to the degree where iOS seems free and unrestrictive. Nobody wants an Android here now, problem solved and none of the former Android users are using personal Androids anymore either, they have either upgraded to iPhones on their own or stopped using a personal phone and use the work one exclusively now.
 

cybereality

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I mean, I think Android can be secure if you are careful. It's just a lot easier to do something stupid.

Also, even only downloading from Google Play is not guarantee of anything, there are regular breaches of apps that go unnoticed for months or longer.

So even as much as I don't like Apple, they are not lying.
 

Lakados

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I mean, I think Android can be secure if you are careful. It's just a lot easier to do something stupid.

Also, even only downloading from Google Play is not guarantee of anything, there are regular breaches of apps that go unnoticed for months or longer.

So even as much as I don't like Apple, they are not lying.
Agreed, and I can confirm from a telemetry perspective that the iOS devices on the network don't generate nearly as much telemetry as the Android or ChromeOS based ones, iOS sends requests to a caching server for apps and such randomly but outside of the odd crash report nothing goes back to Apple. Android and ChromeOS on the other hand spam the crap out of the network every 2-3 minutes reporting something, ensuring I am blocking it all is a PITA. So if Apple is trying to collect data from me and my users (most of which are minors) they are doing it so well I can't find them doing it. Google though isn't even trying to hide it.

I don't want to like Apple on this, but looking at the alternatives I don't know how to change things for the better without decreasing the quality of their services. And I'm pretty sure that Fortnight and other apps and their "loot boxes" targeting children were most of the reason Apple had to implement their payment rules, as it was costing them a small fortune to deal with MC and Visa and the likes to reverse all those charges when parents called in angrily to demand those multi-thousand dollar refunds that their kids were racking up. So it's a problem Epic may not have been the cause of but they and their ilk certainly contributed too.

I think Apple's best and only real strategy here is to "re-evaluate" their pricing and hold some sort of discussion with developers to implement some sort of tiered payment options instead of the flat 30%, it lets them keep their whales while appearing to be favorable to the smaller guys. It might result in a small revenue drop, but not something they couldn't afford while getting regulators off their backs and shutting down future lawsuit options.

Thought I will laugh my ass off if this results in Apple developing some first-party titles maybe developing and launching a first-party engine and adopting a licensing strategy similar to Unreals but slightly better, they could afford it.
 
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cybereality

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Well SteamOS never really went anywhere, but Valve's investment into Linux made Proton (now called Steam Play) a reality.

It's not perfect, but I would say the majority of Windows games are playable on Linux, maybe as much as 75-80% if you include manual tweaks.

Sadly anti-cheat is still an issue, so multiplayer games are not a good idea, but for single-player you can play a lot of games with no setup on Linux right now.
 
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