While the final arguments in the Epic Games Vs. Apple trial were given today, the case is far from closed, with Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers suggesting her ultimate decision could take several months. With all the evidence piling up over the past weeks on both sides, the judge insisted today that she would need an extended period of time to sort through it all and deliver a conclusion.
The showdown between the two businesses began nearly a year ago when Fortnite developer Epic Games filed a complaint against Apple after its hit battle royale was removed from the company’s app store for skirting the platform’s revenue policies. Epic’s legal team is seeking to prove to the judge that Apple has an illegal monopoly on the market while Apple insists its practices are fair and that curating its app store this way is better for its customers.
A report from GameSpot breaking down the trial’s eventful proceedings mentions that Judge Gonzalez Rogers may not make a final ruling until August. According to the article, the judge even suggested that she may take until exactly August 13, the date when Epic Games kicked everything off by announcing its intention to file legal papers against Apple. However, more seriously, Gonzalez Rogers pointed out that there were “thousands and thousands of pages to review.” This statement makes it clear that those waiting for the trial’s conclusion should not expect it anytime soon.
However, plenty has come out of the trial since it began on May 3 to keep those interested occupied until the final ruling – including some information that many in the games industry would have preferred to stay hidden. A document that shared how much Epic Games had paid for some of its exclusive deals was inadvertently released near the beginning of the proceedings. With nearly ten months of data, the list details how much – or how little – each title’s deal cost Epic, how many times a game was downloaded, and how many new accounts were created on the platform. However, not every leak from the Epic vs. Apple trial related strictly to those two companies. Xbox and Nintendo, for example, both found themselves in the headlines when some of the trial’s material suggested that Xbox Game Pass could be headed to the Nintendo Switch.
Though the trial and its contents might have set a lot of people talking, Epic Games’ CEO Tim Sweeney is seemingly planning to stay silent on the topic while waiting for the judge’s decision. That likely means headlines on the Epic Games Vs Apple trial will disappear for a while. However, interest is sure to bound back with the final ruling, considering how it may affect the industry beyond the trial’s two participants.
The trial between Epic Games and Apple, which removed Fortnite from the App Store in August, has developed to a point where Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo could feel the very serious consequences of this legal battle, as well. This trial has been in the public's eye since it began two months ago for its hugely profitable and well-known parties involved, and for the stakes that this trial holds for the future of gaming.
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