With the recent decision from a judge in the lawsuit between Epic and Apple, Apple will be obligated to allow third party payment options in its apps. Epic Games appealed the ruling since they claim it didn't go far enough in Judge Yvonne Gonzalez-Rogers' ruling that Apple doesn't operate as a monopoly in the area of electronic gaming transactions.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney posted a letter received in response to Epic requesting that Apple reinstate Fortnite to the App Store. "Apple informed Epic that Fortnite will be blacklisted from the Apple ecosystem until the exhaustion of all court appeals, which could be as long as a 5-year process" Sweeney posted on Twitter with a copy of the full letter. Because "Apple had contractual rights to act as it did. It merely enforced those rights as [Epic's] own internal documents show Epic Games expected," the company refused reinstatement. Instead, Apple named Epic's "duplicitous conduct" and statements made by Sweeney in order to justify a decision to keep Fortnite off the App Store until the entire process has played out and there are no further appeal options left, something Sweeney says could take up to five years.
While the Judge's ruling does follow a similar new law in Korea where third party payment options must be available, the other side of it means that Apple still has a lot of leverage over what is and isn’t available in the App Store. Epic also still owes Apple the 30% cut it was contractually obligated to deliver when the game was in the App Store and through its attempt to circumvent the original system. The case between Epic and Apple is one that will remain entangled in the winding road of legal appeals and rulings for a while. And that’s not counting that Epic also still has its case with Google to be decided.