Epic Games Not Impressed With Google’s Third Party App Billing System for Spotify

Epic Games’ Fortnite remains unavailable on Apple App Store and Google Play.

Epic says Google’s one deal does not change the anti-competitive status quo. Google recently started letting select developers test their own payment system within apps.

Epic Games is not impressed with Alphabet-owned Google’s new programme that lets select Android developers test their own billing system. The gaming company has been embroiled in a long legal battle with Apple and Google for removing Fortnite from the respective app stores. In a statement to The Verge, Epic VP of public policy, Corie Wright said, “Apple and Google continue to abuse their market power with policies that stifle innovation, inflate prices and reduce consumer choice”. The remarks came after Google selected Spotify and some more developers to offer a payment system in their apps in addition to Google’s own payment methods.

Epic also told the publication that Google’s one deal does not change the anti-competitive status quo. “We will continue to fight for fair and open platforms for all developers and consumers and work with policymakers and regulators to hold these gatekeepers accountable for their anticompetitive conduct,” the Fortnite creator claimed.

The company also clarified that it is not a part of the pilot programme alongside Spotify and others. However, it remains unclear whether Epic was approached by Google for this programme or not.

Details of the new billing system remain unclear, and Google has said it will offer more clarity in the coming months. The company had said, “This pilot will help us to increase our understanding of whether and how user choice billing works for users in different countries and for developers of different sizes and categories”.

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Epic claims that Apple and Google app store payment policies take a large share of app revenue as commissions and has called the practice unfair. In August 2020, Epic Games introduced their own billing system that bypassed Apple’s App Store payment system. As a penalty, the company removed Fortnite from the app store. The company has also sued Google for removing the game from Play Store for the same reasons of introducing a native payment system.

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