Apple has removed one of the most popular games from its App Store — Fortnite, a battle royale game created by Epic Games. The move comes just hours after the company implemented its own in-app payments system that bypasses Apple’s system which charges a 30 percent commission.
Currently, the users who have already downloaded the Fortnite game on their iOS device are able to access it. But, given that the game has been pulled from the App Store, new downloads are not possible.
It is also being reported by users that Epic Games’ own in-app payment system is also working, which can be used to purchase v-bucks. When pushing the new update with the new payment method, the company said how Epic’s in-app payment system would result in cheaper prices.
For instance, 1,000 V-bucks, which is around $10 in-game currency, costs just $7.99 if purchased through Epic direct payment while it costs $9.99 if purchased through the standard Apple payment processing. This is likely because Apple is charging 30 percent fees for everything purchased through its in-app payments system.
In a statement to The Verge, Apple said that the company is planning to work with Epic Games to “resolve these violations” but has added that it has no intention to create a “special arrangement for the company.
Epic has said that it was taking legal action to “end Apple’s anti-competitive restrictions on mobile device marketplaces.” In a statement, the company said: “Apple’s removal of Fortnite is yet another example of Apple flexing its enormous power in order to impose unreasonable restraints and unlawfully maintain its 100% monopoly over the iOS In-App Payment Processing Market.”
The development comes at a time when Apple is currently navigating antitrust concerns over its App Store policies. The same in-app payment system by Epic has been added in the Android version as well, but Google has not taken any actions against the company and not released any statement.
Fortnite is one of the most popular games out there right now, with the company claiming to have more than 350 million registered players. As per the data from SuperData, the game generated $1.8 billion in revenue last year.