Apple has terminated Epic Games’ developer account today as it had initially said after the developer had violated the App Store guidelines by adding a direct payment method to Fortnite. Apple had already removed Fortnite from the App Store after the violation but this move also affects other games from Epic Games that were available on the App Store.
Since Epic Games developer account has been deleted, all other games associated with its account including Battle Breakers and Infinity Blade are no longer available for download. Searching for any of these games does not bring up anything on the App Store anymore. If you already have Fortnite or any other game from Epic installed on your iPhone or iPad, they will continue to work just fine. It is just that they will no longer receive any updates. The deletion of Epic Games’ developer account also means that users who already have Fortnite installed on their iPhone or iPad will not be able to make any in-app transactions inside the game.
Apple had initially threatened to ban the primary as well as other subsidiary accounts of Epic Games including that of Epic International that could have affected Unreal Engine, the game development engine that’s used by a number of studios across various platforms. However, it cannot do so due to a TRO by the court.
We are disappointed that we have had to terminate the Epic Games account on the App Store. We have worked with the team at Epic Games for many years on their launches and releases. The court recommended that Epic comply with the App Store guidelines while their case moves forward, guidelines they’ve followed for the past decade until they created this situation. Epic has refused. Instead they repeatedly submit Fortnite updates designed to violate the guidelines of the App Store. This is not fair to all other developers on the App Store and is putting customers in the middle of their fight. We hope that we can work together again in the future, but unfortunately that is not possible today.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney in a tweet said that the above statement from Apple is not forthright and they did not have to terminate their account.
Apple's statement isn't forthright. They chose to terminate Epic's account; they didn't *have* to.
Apple suggests we spammed the App Store review process. That's not so. Epic submitted three Fortnite builds: two bug-fix updates, and the Season 4 update with this note. pic.twitter.com/VpWEERDp5L
— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) August 28, 2020
Apple deleting the Epic Games developer account is only going to make the strained relationship between the two companies even worse. The next hearing between the two companies is scheduled on September 28 to find a long-term solution for this issue, but given the worsening relationship between them, this seems unlikely.
Do you think Apple did the right thing by deleting Epic Games developer account?