The verdict for this year’s tech trial of the century is more or less sorted, with Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers issuing a permanent injunction in the case earlier today.
The court has put new restrictions on Apple’s App Store rules. Under the new ruling, Apple is:
“…permanently restrained and enjoined from prohibiting developers from including in their apps and their metadata buttons, external links, or other calls to action that direct customers to purchasing mechanisms, in addition to In-App Purchasing and communicating with customers through points of contact obtained voluntarily from customers through account registration within the app.”
This means iOS apps must be allowed to direct users to payment options beyond those made by Apple. The injunction will take into effect in 90 days; specifically on 9th December. This could cost Apple billions of revenue down the line.
What About Epic Games?
Epic Games was in breach of its contract. Therefore, the company will have to pay Apple 30 percent of all revenue collected through the system since it was implemented. Epic Games has to pay more than US$3.5 million in damages.
Basically, the judges in the court case rejected both parties’ definitions of the marketplace.
“The relevant market here is digital mobile gaming transactions, not gaming generally and not Apple’s own internal operating systems related to the App Store. [T]he court cannot ultimately conclude that Apple is a monopolist under either federal or state antitrust laws. Nonetheless, the trial did show that Apple is engaging in anti-competitive conduct under California’s competition laws.”
Apple declares the new ruling as a victory for the App Store model.
“Today the Court has affirmed what we’ve known all along: the App Store is not in violation of antitrust law. Apple faces rigorous competition in every segment in which we do business, and we believe customers and developers choose us because our products and services are the best in the world. We remain committed to ensuring the App Store is a safe and trusted marketplace.”
Epic CEO Tim Sweeney was not pleased with the decision and will be planning an appeal.
“Today’s ruling isn’t a win for developers or for consumers. Epic is fighting for fair competition among in-app payment methods and app stores for a billion consumers.”
One could say that this is a victory for people who wanted both companies to lose.