On August the 14th, Epic Games launched a lawsuit against Apple after Fortnite was removed from the App Store for offering it owns IAP (In-App-Purchase) option along side Apple’s own. Today Apple retaliated against Epic Games by revoking it’s access to Apple devkits, making future support of Unreal Engine on Apple products impossible and putting Unreal Engine developers in a difficult situation. In response Epic Games have filled a restraining order (PDF Link). Key details from that court filing:
Apple’s retaliation was swift and decisive. The morning Epic made these options available, Apple removed Fortnite from the App Store, ensuring that millions of players would
imminently lose the ability to use Fortnite to connect with their family and friends. Soon after, Epic filed its suit against Apple challenging its monopoly on app stores and in-app purchases.
Less than twelve hours later, Apple notified Epic it was terminating Epic from the Apple Developer Program, blocking all Epic products from distribution through Apple’s App Store.
Apple specifically stated it would terminate Epic’s access to development tools, including those necessary for Epic to keep offering the world’s most popular graphics engine, the Unreal Engine.
The Unreal Engine is used to develop a wide array of products including games, films, biomedical research and virtual reality. Millions of developers rely on the Unreal Engine to
develop software, and hundreds of millions of consumers use that software. Epic now seeks a preliminary injunction, described with more specificity in the
accompanying proposed order, restraining Apple from removing, de-listing, refusing to list or otherwise making unavailable the app Fortnite, including any Fortnite update, from the
App Store because it provides Fortnite users choice and lower prices on in-app purchases.
Epic further seeks an order prohibiting Apple from taking steps against Epic’s other games and against the Unreal Engine in retaliation for Epic steps to offer Fortnite users choice and lower prices on in-app purchases. Epic satisfies all the elements for preliminary injunctive relief.
The timing of this action is ironic, as Apple just testified before Congress (CNET 15m video summary) in which Apple CEO Tim Cook clearly states that Apple does not retaliate. You can learn more about the entire ordeal in the video below.