Epic Triumph: Google Convicted of Unlawful Monopoly in Lawsuit Brought by Epic
In a decisive legal battle reminiscent of its clash with Apple, Epic Games has emerged triumphant in its lawsuit against Google over the contentious 30% fees on the Play Store. The case, which challenged Google’s alleged monopoly on Android app billing and distribution, took a significant turn as a jury unanimously sided with Epic Games on all counts.
The core argument put forth by Epic Games was that the 30% fee imposed by Google was exorbitant and stifled competition. Unlike the case against Apple, Google’s fate hung in the balance of a jury, and their unanimous decision declared Google guilty of an illegal monopoly, citing anticompetitive behaviors such as secret revenue-sharing deals.
Recent revelations during the trial, including Activision Blizzard’s consideration of an alliance with Epic and Supercell to create an alternative Android store, added layers to the complex narrative. While it remains unclear what changes the ruling will bring, Epic Games seeks the freedom for app developers to use their billing systems and implement their own stores on Android.
The impact of this verdict goes beyond the courtroom, signaling a broader challenge to app store practices and their influence over the mobile app market. Google, planning to appeal the decision, maintains that Android and Google Play provide more choice and openness than other major mobile platforms.
In response to the victory, Epic Games celebrated with a public statement: “Today’s verdict is a win for all app developers and consumers around the world. It proves that Google’s app store practices are illegal and they abuse their monopoly to extract exorbitant fees, stifle competition and reduce innovation.”
As this legal saga unfolds, the landscape of mobile app markets faces potential shifts, inviting discussions on competition, fees, and the role of app store gatekeepers. The legal journey initiated by Epic Games in 2020 has become a focal point for examining the intricate dynamics of the mobile app industry and the ongoing pursuit of fairness and innovation.
Source: adapted from an article by Aaron Astle, News Editor for PocketGamer.biz.