The company relies on impulsive purchases inside Fortnite, so the payment process should be as simple as possible.
The second day of Epic Games ‘ legal proceedings against Apple took place: the developer opposes the 30% commission in the App Store and the rules of the App store.
One of the topics of the meeting was the workarounds that developers use to avoid violating the rules of the App Store. For example, to sell virtual currency games or Premium subscription on the site, and not in the app-so Apple will not receive a 30% commission on the payment.
Prior to the removal, Fortnite on iOS supported the “cross-wallet” feature, with which you can buy in-game currency (V-Bucks) on one device and spend on another — unlike the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.
Apple’s lawyers told about this in court and asked why Epic Games did not offer users to buy currency through Safari, but instead added its own payment system to the iOS version of Fortnite.
Thus, Epic Games violated the App Store’s rules on in-app payment processing, and Fortnite was removed from the Apple store.
Judge Yvon Rogers found Apple’s arguments convincing and asked Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney why the company did not use the web version to sell V-Bucks.
He admitted that Epic Games could do so, but, in his opinion, it would be “not a very convenient option for users.”
Rogers noted that most of the Fortnite audience is children and schoolchildren, for whom the complexity of payment will reduce the number of impulsive purchases.
Sweeney responded that Fortnite has parental controls, but did not challenge the judge’s opinion. “People are much more likely to make a purchase if it’s easy to make,” Sweeney acknowledged.
Not all developers agree with Apple
Apple claims that using web versions of services is as convenient as using mobile applications — in court, representatives of the company cited the Financial Times web application as an example.
There are those who find this mechanism inconvenient. For example, a representative of Nvidia (a witness from Epic Games) said that the company is forced to launch the cloud streaming service Geforce Now via Safari, as Apple has inconvenient rules for customers of game services in the App Store.
The second witness, the founder of the yoga app Down Dog Ben Simon, said that he offers customers a discount for registering outside the iOS app, since this payment does not need to give 30% to Apple.
But Simon argues that Apple is making the process as difficult as possible: App Store moderators have rejected several versions of the Down Dog iOS app that mention a discount for a purchase elsewhere.
He acknowledged that there are other ways to contact users, but it is much more difficult and inconvenient. “We are limited in how to communicate with users inside our product,” complained the creator of Down Dog.