Is Epic Really Helping the Little Guy?

Business, Lifestyle, Technology
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Some of the biggest news in the tech and entertainment space throughout the past few months has certainly been within the growing legal battle between the developer of the popular game Fortnite, Epic Games, and the two tech giants in Apple and Google. Whilst Google have certainly been able to take more of a back seat and stay out of the limelight, Apple have received much of the focus – the battle started as Epic enabled an option in the game to purchase in-game currency directly through them, forgoing the 30% marketplace tax that is applied both the app store and Play store, which led to the game being removed from both and sparking the legal consequences – whilst the initial fight is still ongoing and is yet to be settled, some changes have been seen. With the recent release of knowledge around “Project Liberty”, the case that Epic is building against Apple, containing information around how this whole approach was aimed at helping the smaller developers, how true is that really?


There are certainly some that have already found a benefit from this – certain genres have had a much harder time trying to find marketplace presence and have had to rely on other approaches with the biggest in this space for example being online casinos, changes to initiatives such as gamstop have already led many to seek alternative approaches but no limit casinos at have been very successful despite this exposure, but changes to the marketplaces could allow examples like these to move into the app space if big changes do come, particularly to the tax on deposits – but these may not be the smallest developers that Epic are looking to help, but perhaps an unexpected side effect. The smaller aim is so that developers who rely on these microtransactions to operate get a bigger slice of the pie, so to speak, but it’s also hard to say whether or not this is the true intention.

It has been reported that Epic Games have made $1.2 billion just from iOS users of their game and so with the game removed from the Apple marketplace it is a huge hit to their yearly revenue, as such it has been difficult for some to believe Epic is really in it to help the smaller developers when they have such a huge stake in the game just from this one platform. On the other hand, Epic have shown to be charitable toward the smaller developers as they offer platforms such as the game engine they develop on for free, with only a small fee to developers once they reach a certain sale threshold. It’s certainly an interesting case, and it’ll take a long while before any solid answers or conclusions are given, but it may also be the catalyst that leads to huge changes in the market and could permanently change the way app marketplaces function in the future depending on any potential ruling required, or further changes that either tech giant will make.

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