Where Apple leads, Google usually follows. Just hours after seeing “Fortnite” dropped by Apple’s App Store, followed by the Google Play Store, and after filing a similar lawsuit against Apple, Epic Games has sued Google over alleged antitrust violations.
The two primary charges are identical to Epic’s suit against Apple: monopoly control over the distribution of software to phones, and monopoly control over payment systems within that software. In Google’s case, Epic is specifically concerned about the Google Play Store’s powerful role as a distributor of Android apps, and the Play Store’s requirement that hosted apps use Play Store Billing for any in-app purchases.
Thursday’s lawsuit makes a similar case, arguing that Google has established the Play Store as the only viable distribution method for Android apps. “Notwithstanding its promises to make Android devices open to competition, Google has erected contractual and technological barriers that foreclose competing ways of distributing apps to Android users, ensuring that the Google Play Store accounts for nearly all the downloads of apps from app stores on Android devices.”
Reached for comment, Google emphasized that Fortnite had been removed from the Play Store for violating clear and pre-established rules.
MacDailyNews Take: Yesterday, a hot dog vendor was kicked out of the local mall. The hot dog guy just rolled his cart in there, plugged in his neon sign, and started selling hot dogs without even telling, much less contracting with, the mall. He went down the road and tried to do it at the next mall, too. They kicked him out, too. Now, he’s suing both malls for “antitrust violations.” Gee, wonder if he’ll win his lawsuits?