Apple relents, reinstates Epic Games developer account


Epic Games vs Apple: Developer account battle
Epic Games came out ahead in the latest skirmish between the developer and Apple.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Epic Games can release Fortnite in the EU and open an App Store rival after Apple restored the company’s developer account. This came as the European Commission was starting an inquiry into why the account had been cancelled.

Apple called Epic Games “untrustworthy” when it pulled the account.

Epic Games will be able to release Fortnite in EU after all

Apple and Epic Games have been embroiled in legal fights for years. In a dispute over Apple’s requirement that it receive a share of the game developer’s revenue from iPhone users, Fortnite and other titles were kicked out of the App Store and all Epic’s developer accounts were suspended in 2020.

Then the EU passed the Digital Markets Act to, among other things, allow increased competition with Apple’s iPhone App Store. Under the aegis of the new legislation, Epic Games Sweden got an Apple developer account earlier this year and announced a plan to open an Epic Games Store in Europe.

But Apple quickly terminated the account after accusing Epic CEO Tim Sweeney of “public attacks on Apple’s policies,” and called his company “verifiably untrustworthy.”

But Sweeney took to X (formerly Twitter) on Friday to announce:

“Following a swift inquiry by the European Commission, Apple notified the Commission and Epic that it would relent and restore our access to bring back Fortnite and launch Epic Games Store in Europe under the DMA law.”

Ina statement given to Bloomberg, Apple said:

“Following conversations with Epic, they have committed to follow the rules, including our DMA policies. As a result, Epic Sweden AB has been permitted to re-sign the developer agreement and accepted into the Apple Developer Program.”

Epic Games declared victory in its own statement:

“This sends a strong signal to developers that the European Commission will act swiftly to enforce the Digital Markets Act and hold gatekeepers accountable. We are moving forward as planned to launch the Epic Games Store and bring Fortnite back to iOS in Europe.”

When the popular game will be available for European iPhone users is unknown. It’ll require the opening of the aforementioned Epic Games Store but the company hasn’t given a timetable for this either.

To be clear, this is relevant only to residents of the European Union. Everyone else must get their iPhone software from the App Store and Epic remains banned from there.


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