Google/Epic Loses Battle Over App Fees: Financial Times
The Financial Times reported a major setback for tech giants Google and Epic Games after a U.S. appeals court ruled against them in a fight over app store fees. The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals declined to overturn an earlier ruling made by a federal judge that found that Google’s 30% fee on app store purchases is legal.
This ruling is a major victory for Google, and also a major blow to Epic’s hopes of establishing a precedent to allow digital stores to change their existing commission fees. The company, most well-known for their Fortnite game, had hoped to persuade the court that Google had engaged in anti-competitive behavior by refusing to allow third-party app stores or lower fees on its own Play Store.
The court’s ruling was praised by Google, who issued a statement saying it was “pleased with the Court’s decision rejecting Epic’s arguments.” They went on to reiterate their commitment to openness and choice on the Play Store, stating that “our path forward remains focused on creating a vibrant and open ecosystem that helps developers build successful businesses, while giving them the freedom to choose where their apps launch.”
Epic Games have yet to issue a statement in response to the ruling, but it is clear that this is a big disappointment for the company, and the wider app industry as a whole. It likely means that Google will continue to control the fees it charges for app purchases, setting a precedent that could be hard for other digital stores to challenge.