The judge overseeing the Fortnite lawsuit believes that it should be decided by a jury in July 2021 at the earliest.
While Fortnite has continued to receive new updates, Epic’s dispute with Apple over the battle royale being removed from the Apple store has arguably been the biggest talking point surrounding it.
The two have been engaged in a lawsuit for the last few months and it appears far from concluding, as it could be trialled by a jury in July 2021 at the earliest, as suggested by Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers.
According to VentureBeat, Gonzales Rogers, who is overseeing the case, said: ‘I think personally this case should be tried to a jury. I want everyone to think about that. I don’t think individual judges have the be-all and end-all here.’
A major aspect of the case has been Epic’s criticism of Apple’s 30% fee on in-game purchases, which CEO Tim Sweeney has previously called exploitative.
However, Gonzales Rogers questioned why Epic appeared to be okay with allowing Fortnite on other marketplaces that also charge a 30% fee.
‘If we look at the video game industry, of which [Epic] is a part, the 30% seems to be the industry rate,’ she said. ‘Steam charges 30%. GOG. Microsoft charges 30%. In the consoles, PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo, GameStop, Amazon, Best Buy charge 30%. [Epic] doesn’t. Where is the lack of competition?’
Epic’s lawyers also argued that Fortnite’s ban from the Apple store has led to daily active players dropping by 60%.
Apple’s lawyers countered that Epic hasn’t provided enough evidence to prove that iOS players haven’t simply switched over to another version on consoles or PC.
As a reminder, Fortnite was banned in the first place for offering discounts on Fortnite’s in-game currency, which bypassed the Apple store and prevented Apple from claiming its 30% fee, which was a violation of Apple’s guidelines.
Apple’s lawyers have called this an act of sabotage, and Gonzales Rogers appears to agree somewhat, telling Epic: ‘You were not forthright. You were told you couldn’t do it, and you did.’
With neither Epic nor Apple looking to back down any time soon, we could very well see the case continue for another year.
Fortnite is available on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
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