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UK court refuses to force Apple to reinstate ‘Fortnite’ to App Store; Epic Games settles loot box

  • February 23, 2021

which began in August 2020 when Epic offered a direct payment method for Fortnite mobile players, spans the globe. Last week, Epic Games filed an antitrust complaint against Apple in the European Union. It has also filed a similar suit in Australia. Epic also filed suit against Google in August 2020 after “Fortnite” was removed from the Google Play store.Carrier lowers price of its 5G unlimited wireless plan, boosts hot spot data allowance

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The UK court ruled that portions of Epic’s suit against Google subsidiaries in the UK could move forward. But, in general, ruled that most of both cases should reside in the U.S. “While there may be acts in the UK, they flow directly from acts in the U.S. since in a digital world the territorial location of the ‘act’ is a somewhat anachronistic concept,” Roth wrote in his ruling.

Epic Games, in its complaint to the European Commission’s competition watchdog, accused Apple of blocking competitors and abusing its dominant position, in breach of EU rules.

“What’s at stake here is the very future of mobile platforms,” Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney said in an online post. “We will not stand idly by and allow Apple to use its platform dominance to control what should be a level digital playing field.”

Apple countered, saying it introduced a payment feature that Apple did not review or approve, with the intention of violating app store guidelines that apply equally to every developer and are aimed at protecting customers.

“Their reckless behavior made pawns of customers, and we look forward to making this clear to the European Commission,” Apple said in a statement.

Loot boxes settled

In other legal action, Epic Games settled a class action suit involving U.S. players of “Rocket League” and “Fortnite Save The World” (a co-op version of the game, not the popular battle royale mode) who bought a random item “Crate” loot box before they were discontinued. The class action suit argued that the loot boxes were “predatory,” The Verge reported in 2019 when the case was filed.

Players who purchased one, starting in July 1, 2015 and until a date to be determined – the settlement is not yet final – can get 1,000 Fortnite V-Bucks or 1,000 Rocket League Credits for each account used to acquire a random item loot box.

The proposed Settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing by Epic Games, and it denies that it violated the law, the company says on the settlement site. Epic Games has set aside up to $26.5 million in cash and other benefits to U.S.-based  players to resolve the claims.

Players can also submit a claim form to get credits or a cash benefit on the settlement site.

Contributing: Associated Press

Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider.

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