Apple terminates Epic Games developer account amidst legal battles

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The ongoing saga between Apple and Epic Games has taken a dramatic turn in the world of online gaming. Epic Games, the powerhouse behind Fortnite, has revealed that Apple has officially terminated its developer account. This surprising move marks a reversal from Apple’s earlier approval of Epic’s account just last month. The approval was anticipated to pave the way for Fortnite’s return to iOS devices in the EU under the new Digital Markets Act (DMA).

However, Epic Games has now disclosed that Apple’s legal team has sent a letter terminating its Epic Games Sweden AB account. This action is being characterized by Epic as a “serious violation of the DMA” and a clear indication that Apple is unwilling to promote genuine competition on iOS devices.

As reported by TechCrunch, Epic Games has voiced its concerns on its company blog, where it has also shared copies of its correspondence with Apple. The game developer alleges that Apple cited Epic’s criticism of the proposed DMA rules as one of the reasons for its decision. This move comes amidst Epic’s ongoing legal battles with Apple over antitrust concerns and its advocacy for stricter regulations in various markets.

According to Epic, Apple views the company as a threat to its ecosystem and is retaliating against it for speaking out. Apple’s Phil Schiller highlighted Epic’s past breaches of agreements and colorful criticism in a letter dated February 23, 2024, expressing doubts about Epic’s willingness to adhere to the rules.

Despite Epic’s assertions that it intends to comply with Apple’s terms, the termination of its developer account has raised questions about trust between the two companies. Apple defended its decision, citing Epic’s past breaches and the contractual right to terminate agreements, as established in a 2021 judgment resulting from litigation between the two parties.

As this dispute unfolds, it’s clear that tensions between Apple and Epic Games continue to escalate, with ramifications for both companies and the wider gaming community. Stay tuned for further updates on this evolving story.