Tim Sweeney, the CEO of Fortnite developer Epic Games has spoken against the absolute monopoly Google and Apple have with their respective app stores. There aren’t many viable options other than Google Play Store and App Store for developers to distribute their mobile software and Tim has criticized the app stores for taking up to 30% from in-app purchases.
The Epic Games Store was launched by Epic Games for Windows and macOS back in 2018. The game store only charges a 12% fee from other publishers for in-app purchases. Epic Games failed to make it to Apple’s iOS App Store due to strict guidelines that Apple has against competing stores.
They [Apple] are preventing an entire category of businesses and applications from being engulfed in their ecosystem by virtue of excluding competitors from each aspect of their business that they’re protecting.
Epic Games tried to sidestep the 30% fee from Google by launching Fortnite for Android on its website instead. But since the download process was complicated for a lot of users, Fortnite was eventually launched on Google Play Store earlier this year. Sweeney said that the company still plans to bring Epic Games Store to Android eventually but he added:
Google essentially intentionally stifles competing stores by having user interface barriers and obstruction.
Epic Games is not the first developer to speak against Apple and Google’s absolute monopoly. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek filed a complaint against Apple for unfair competition and said that the unreasonable fee forced the company to inflate its premium subscription prices. Tinder also introduced a new payment method to avoid Google Play Store’s fee.