Meanwhile, four years later, Apple just laid out why it will never approve cloud gaming apps and game subscription services like Microsoft’s xCloud and Xbox Game Pass as well as Google Stadia. Apple’s justification for doing so — that it cannot individually review all of the games offered by cloud gaming platforms as it would standard iOS apps — provoked Sweeney to issue another harsh condemnation. “Apple has outlawed the metaverse,” he wrote on Twitter. “The principle they state, taken literally, would rule out all cross-platform ecosystems and games with user created modes: not just XCloud, Stadia, and GeForce NOW, but also Fortnite, Minecraft, and Roblox.”
Apple has outlawed the metaverse.
The principle they state, taken literally, would rule out all cross-platform ecosystems and games with user created modes: not just XCloud, Stadia, and GeForce NOW, but also Fortnite, Minecraft, and Roblox. https://t.co/OAGC7cXfSl— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) August 6, 2020
Since Fortnite v bucks generator first arrived on mobile in 2018, the game has existed as a standard iOS app; Sweeney has openly said his company only did so because there is no other way to enter Apple’s closed ecosystem. That means Apple has taken 30 percent of all in-app purchases of Fortnite currency used to purchase its battle pass subscription service and the cosmetic skins, emotes, and other digital goods that make the battle royale one of the most lucrative entertainment properties on the planet. Fortnite earned Epic $2.4 billion in 2018 and $1.8 billion in 2019, helped in large part by its popularity across platforms, as players can use the same account across iOS, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Epic previously bypassed Google’s Play Store on Android by releasing Fortnite as a direct download through its own software launcher. But the studio eventually relented earlier this year after failing to appeal Google for an exemption of its similar 30 percent cut of all in-app purchases. “After 18 months of operating Fortnite on Android outside of the Google Play Store, we’ve come to a basic realization,” reads Epic’s statement. “Google puts software downloadable outside of Google Play at a disadvantage.”
Epic’s statement at the time was transparent in its displeasure at how Google, and by extension Apple, treat third-party software that doesn’t abide by its rules. Epic also later joined Match Group, the parent company of Tinder and other dating apps, in issuing statements of support for two ongoing antitrust investigations into Apple conducted by the European Union, launched only after Spotify and other app makers protested App Store policies they say unfairly punish Apple competitors.