Fortnite maker Epic Games on Thursday announced new payment options that allow customers to buy in-game credits directly from Epic Games. The direct payment option to Epic appears to skirt Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store rules, which require Epic to give those firms a 30% cut of revenue made through the app.
Fortnite is massively popular. Epic knows that. And it may suggest the company wants to see if Apple and Google are willing to upset Android and iPhone users by taking action against Epic.
Apple’s App Store rules say that, on iPhones and iPads, users are required to buy digital goods directly from the App Store. That means, for example, Epic may be breaking the rules by allowing users to buy goods from its own store, and at a discount. Apps that try to skirt the rules could be removed from the App Store. Similarly, Google’s rules say for “apps and in-app products offered through Google Play, the service fee is equivalent to 30% of the price.”
It’s not immediately clear, however, if Epic has a special agreement in place with Apple and Google.
Get up to 20% savings on V-Bucks and real-money offers for every purchase on PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, PC, and Mac, and on mobile when using select payment methods.
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Today, we’re also introducing a new way to pay on iOS and Android: Epic direct payment. When you choose to use Epic direct payments, you save up to 20% as Epic passes along payment processing savings to you.
MacDailyNews Take: You know, it costs money to run the App Store and the value Apple provides to developers of having a safe, secure, organized, curated App Store is actually quite significant.
Epic seems to want to enjoy all of the benefits of Apple’s App Store, including access to 1+ billion of the most affluent users for free. That is illogical, unfair, and, basically, theft, regardless of who gets the “savings.”
If there’s no deal between Apple and Epic for this “Epic direct payment” thing, Apple (and Google) should pull the game until it adheres to App Store rules.