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Epic Vs. Apple: Every App Store At Risk

Apr. 12, 2021 8:00 AM ETApple Inc. (AAPL)AMZN, GOOG, GOOGL, MSFT, RBLX, SNEJF, SONY, U183 Comments


  • There are very high stakes in this case. Every app store and a large part of Apple’s business model are at risk.
  • There is tortured logic on both sides, much more so and on key foundational issues from Epic.
  • But law is not logic. The risk is real.
  • If Epic wants to keep going, this will take a very, very long time.

Iphone Apps.
Photo by Savusia Konstantin/iStock Editorial via Getty Images

Battle Lines

Last week, both Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Epic Games filed their initial proposed findings of facts in Epic v. Apple. These are the competing narratives that are at odds

This article was written by

Confirmation Bias Is Your Enemy.

Tech and macro. Deep analysis of long term sectoral trends, and the opportunities arising from them. I promise not to bore you. Author of Long View Capital, a Marketplace service for long-term investors. Risk Factors: I am also wrong sometimes.

Analyst’s Disclosure: I am/we are long AAPL. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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Comments (183)

The Trial commences tomorrow. While I acknowledge being a strong AAPL supporter, I see EPIC as a wrong doer. EPIC signed the contract, agreeing to the Terms, made a huge amount of money under AAPL's umbrella, and then decided to Breach the Contract AND pro actively act to damage/harm AAPL's reputation. Therefore, I see EPIC as a villain and my experience tells me that triers of fact (juries or judges) don't like to reward wrongdoers. As stated above, EPIC is a wrongdoer in this situation.

After the Verdict -- the long Appellate process leading inexorably to a out of court settlement precipitated by the party opponent that wants out.
davel profile picture

Epic is trying to convince the courts ( and governments ) that Apple is a monopoly that needs to be reigned in.

An economist would retort that 15% does not constitute a monopoly. A large player maybe but not a monopoly.

Apple’s response is a simple contract issue.

Epic has a real chance, but only if they can convince the court to redefine economic principles ( which is not unprecedented).
@davel The Contract breach is there but that's not the sum and substance of AAPL's defense position.

"redefine economic principles" -- I've never heard that term and have no idea what you mean. Whose definition of the new definition becomes the standard? District court judge? Appellate court judge? Supreme Court justices?

Contracts b/w equal bargaining parties isn't subject to wholesale definitions based on second guessing.
davel profile picture

From investopedia

A monopoly refers to when a company and its product offerings dominate a sector or industry. Monopolies can be considered an extreme result of free-market capitalism in that, absent any restriction or restraints, a single company or group becomes large enough to own all or nearly all of the market (goods, supplies, commodities, infrastructure, and assets) for a particular type of product or service. The term monopoly is often used to describe an entity that has total or near-total control of a market.

This is commonly the definition of a monopoly.

The market being mobile phones for example where Apple owns approximately 15% share. Unless I am mistaken 15% is not dominant share of the market.

In a nutshell that is the argument Apple makes with regard to monopoly.
Trading Places Research profile picture
Oh look, Valve is getting sued now. Every app store at risk

@Trading Places Research Not going to happen. Not even close. Pure example of hysteria, nothing more. Even though you might not like to hear it; AAPL has rights too.
Investing For The Future profile picture
@Trading Places Research Apparently having a competitive advantage is now considered anti-competitive. What will they think of next?
If Epic wins that means if developers think a company is charging too much they just don't have to pay. What this means for me is that I can build a game on the Unreal Engine, but when it comes to paying royalties... I don't have to because they have a monopoly on this engine. I think it's unfair that I have to share with them so I just decide not to pay them because they are a monopolistic company and Unity lets me do it for free... So, they should too.

This is my takeaway and I may just make a game on the Unreal Engine and then refuse to pay them any royalties. When they take me to court I will cite that they forced Apple to let them create and market their game for free... Thus so should I be able to circumvent paying them as well.

Think about it. None of these companies are your friends. They don't care about developers or anything else. All they care about is that they are not getting 100% of the profit and were trying at first to underhandedly get all the money, and now have a judge give them all the money. Either way Apple and Epic do not care about developers, players, or users... They only care about themselves and how much money they make at the end of a day. They could care less what any of you think.
davel profile picture
See what @tradingplaces posted above regarding valve..

Really!? LMAO -- Come on, do you really believe that?
Trading Places Research profile picture
@combatcorpsmanVN Yes. If a court decides iPhone is a foremarket monopoly, how is XBox not a foremarket monopoly? How is Steam not a foremarket monopoly?

Maybe I didn’t explain the theory well enough, b/c it’s very counterintuitive. Epic argues that iPhone/iOS is a market unto itself. The ecosystem is 1 market, not part of a larger market. If they successfully convince courts of that argument, everyone is at risk, so long as they are big enough. All the big App Stores will lose their ability to set terms. It will unleash a flood of lawsuits.
@Trading Places Research You're certainly welcome to your conclusion. Does your analysis stop with AAPL? What about companies in other sectors that hold similar positions in terms of products/services? Where are you drawing the line? Xbox -- MSFT? "Steam"? Are you mixing up your companies? Flood of lawsuits - under what theory of liability? Does one theory of liability i.e. monopoly create a platform to field strip dominant companies in diverse sectors by courts attempting to write laws under the guise of interpreting laws? IMO not even close.

I think your analysis and (possible) end result is seriously flawed.
Trading Places Research profile picture
@combatcorpsmanVN No court has ever accepted this theory. If it were to win out on appeal through the supreme court, it entirely changes the meaning of “monopoly” as we think of it.

These are all potential “monopolies” under that definition:
Tesla’s OS

Let’s just take the last one. Roblox:
-Requires you use their development software
-Requires you use their in-game currency for payments
-Puts big restrictions on content and even speech

This would tie courts up for years adjudicating all this. I am not a lawyer, so I am not about to put odds on it. But still I would be very surprised if Epic won, even at the district level.
Steve Jobs was a moron. He drove Apple into the ground and then left to start that pile of junk company called Next. While at Next he came up with another horrible idea called Objective-C. He then drove Next into the ground and when Apple was about to go bankrupt, when their stock price was around $5 a share, they asked him to come back. So what did the genius do? He begged for a meeting with Bill Gates and the Microsoft executive team. He asked Microsoft for money and surprisingly Gates agreed to fund Apple with the agreement that Jobs would be able to keep a majority ownership of Apple, but Microsoft would own the rest. Then what did the genius Jobs do? He decided the computer and software company was now going to make phones!!! Usually when an idiot makes such a ridiculous decision the universe punishes them. But not this time. It was a one in a billion chance, but he got it. And oh yeah, if you wanted to build apps for his new phone, you had to use that albatross of a programming language called Objective-C.

And who had the last laugh? Microsoft. They had almost as much ownership in Apple as Apple did; throughout that entire iPhone growth trajectory.

The details are amazing aren’t they?
@PermaFrostByte Even if someone believed this opinion, what is its relevance to the topic of the article?
@PermaFrostByte I worked on a NeXT. It had a gorgeous black and white screen and was a decade ahead anything else.

The genius did not beg Gates and did not gamble iPhone. He created iMac G3. And that was enough to save Apple. And to explain why Gates had to agree.

Objective-C had exactly two flaws. It was excessively compatible with C and was not designed with the goal to hire as many cheap programmers as possible in mind.

iPhone was not a chance, it was an invention. If you believe inventions are being punished routinely, please consult Mr. Edison.

As for Microsoft, I do not know what they got. But any theory must explain why they an away from mobile devices in shame and terror.
@md#23 Actually, Jobs forced Gates hand as Microsoft actually was found with their thieving hand stealing Apples Quicktime code and used it for their Media Player. Jobs said he would let it go if they invested a sum for a few years and also agreed to develop Office for Mac for another five years or so. So that Apple could focus on their products instead of warring on several fronts.
Ask yourselves two questions: When was the last time you heard MSFT referred to as "The Great Satan? When was the last time you heard anyone refer to "The Blue Screen Of Death"? And if you need a third question how about when the last time anyone referred to AAPL as "Think Different"?
Point being that all three maxims/aphorisms are so last century. My wife and I have been using PCs since the mid 1980s: I, for various reasons have been tied to Windows machines; She, on the other hand has been using AAPL products exclusively. While Apple may have had an edge early on with the mouse tied to the GUI, and the "i" suite, since about fifteen years ago, there is no discernable difference in hardware or software reliability/robustness/utility between AAPL and MSFT that either my wife or I can identify. Early on, Apple DID "think different". Those days are, for the most part, history, but Apple has managed to ensnare an ever-increasing user base with ever-increasing sizzle (at the expense of steak) like "ecosystem", and flashy "gee whiz" advertising featuring self-professed savvy social media types who are wiling to pay ridiculous prices for the dubious opportunity to unleash their self-identified "creativity" by shooting full-length cinema projects with iPhones, or recording the next gone-gold chart-topper, etc., etc., ad nauseum. Steve Jobs' talent (calling it "genius" is inarguably hyperbole) was adapting new or newer recently released into the public domain inventions to consumer products. Keep in mind, however, that Jobs lived and worked in and near Silicon Valley and kept at least one ear to the ground, and Steve Jobs is inarguably...well...let's just say...dead. So while AAPL was an early adopter of the mouse and the GUI, and the first mover with the "i" suite, there's little if any "wide moat". All of AAPLs products have been successfully copied and marketed by numerous competitors. Today, AAPL consists of a status symbol - an analog to buying a Chevy Z71 Offroad pickup which will never get closer to an offroad experience than the owners driveway, or a "pro" this or that purchased by a dilettante eager to assuage endemic insecurity. The vast majority of APPL users would find themselves just as well served with a $500 ASUS laptop or a $250 Motorola phone. AAPL's ecosystem inhabitants today are a curious admixture of legacy insecure naive zealotry entrapped in a Hotel California-type "ecosystem". But as always, there is money to be made by shearing sheep. P.T. Barnum proved it beyond doubt.
Trading Places Research profile picture
@js204 now do watches and headphones and tablets.
SqueakyToy profile picture
Anyone who erroneously believes Windows offers anything close to a comparable user experience to MacOS clearly has never used both platforms for any appreciable amount of time. The differences are quite stark.

Sure, it's true that a 1978 Ford Pinto and a 2021 Lexus LS will both get you from point A to point B, but only one of those offers an impeccable experience throughout the years you'll journey in it.
Investing For The Future profile picture
@js204 I love your comment and eloquence. Apple does, however, have a competitive moat via 8+ strong competitive advantages.

As the bulk of an investor's purpose is to make money, shearing sheep will have to suffice...
What about me - the Iphone customer?

What about my rights?

When are we going to litigate my right to buy software for the phone I OWN from any developer, just like I can buy tires or gasoline for my Ford vehicle from anybody without having to pay Ford??
Trading Places Research profile picture
@bahama727 You should get a class-action suit together if that’s what you want.
@bahama727 let’s say that you buy a vehicle that supports Adaptive Cruise Control and then you purchase either components, firmware or software from an unsanctioned third party to either repair or modify how it operates. And when you then put it on the highway and things don’t go quite as cleanly as they did from the manufacturer? I’d say your argument is oversimplifying the analogy. In the modern world HW, Firmware, OS & software applications will be designed to work as one and modularizing will be done at a much more aggregate level (AI in the cloud leveraging big data in the cloud interfaced and coordinating Task-driven AI on the device). IoT is arriving and the complexity will need to be worked through. I choose a world with more checks and balances focusing on my experience with the tech. and AAPL is a leading the way.
@bahama727 ummm. your Ford vehicle is not a store. The question for me is can you go into, let’s say Walmart, and say I want everything here at your cost. I don’t care about how much you spend on the physical store, the employees, the mechanism for products to actually get in the store, etc etc.
I’d say good luck with that.
Or going into Walmart as a manufacturer and saying I want to sell my product in your store, and I get won’t pay you anything for the privilege. I won’t pay any of your fees for getting space in the store, I just want to use your store and all it’s advantages regarding bringing actual customers to buy my product, all for free!
I wonder if the fact that the practice of jailbreaking an iPhone to use non-approved apps is both well known and quite easy factors into any of these arguments. The fact that no significant alternative marketplaces have had meaningful adoption in this area would suggest to me that there continues to be distinct benefits to operating under the iOS protective umbrella for consumers and developers alike. For now.
Trading Places Research profile picture
@3_furtive_aardvarks Jailbreaks stopped becoming simple and public several years ago. Apple would fill the holes too quickly and they were worthless.

But also, as you say, part of the reason is that there wasn’t much interest from the general public, just the hackers, which should also tell you something.
@Trading Places Research Yeah, I should have put a big fat *relatively qualifier on that easy/public characterization. Of course possible, but I think that even for many (most?) more tech-savvy folks, the effort/reward payoff to sideload around iOS is, for the most part, very low. Just was not sure if this was going to be an issue brought up by either side in a trial where Epic/Apple seem to be arguing the paradigms and practices surrounding Apple’s ‘marketplace’.
G H profile picture

Just to be clear, for anyone who doesn't know this (including apparently you): it is possible for a person or corporation to write an app which they can put on all the iOS devices they own without ever using Apple's distribution scheme or paying Apple any fees. Every iOS application starts out that way. People and corporations have done it millions of times, and they're doing it as I type these words.

Read about XCode, which is Apple's iOS application development environment.
Epic screwed up with this. They had a good thing going and thought they could violate the law by breaking the contract. In todays environment there are many out there who break laws, then wail because they are caught. This is a very simple business issue and the writer here is making a strange case for a debate when there is none IMHO!
Trading Places Research profile picture
@Bepe13 not “debate.” “Very important lawsuit you should not presume will go one way.”

Good luck.
@Bepe13 I think EPIC did the right thing and stood up the big bully appl. We need these mega corporations to stop this BS.

None of apples buisness what I do with my phone after I buy the phone. I have the right to any software from anywhere and pay anyway I want to. Not being forced to appl store.

It's total BS To charge 30% just to down load the app and idiot testing by appl when all the hard work I'd done be small companies.

They stifle innovations, jobs, hide taxes, become more powerful then elected officials and nations.

I think goog and apple have made deal to charge same 30%. Anti trust should also look into all communications between Google and appl as well.
@Bepe13 Not really. It’s all about control. When you control the proprietary platform and closed ecosystem you can write your own ticket to financial nirvana. Apple does just that while at the same time telling you (pretentiously) that it’s for your own good. It’s complete nonsense. A proprietary system is never better for the consumer. Never. This is the crux of the lawsuit and they’re right to sue. Albeit, they could have filed the lawsuit without hacking the platform. That probably won’t help their case much. But, nonetheless, the spirit of the lawsuit is justified.

Apple needs to have an open API. Their proprietary ways have no place in the future.
Apple made Epic the successful company that they became, due to the access to Apple's exclusive customers. Epic got greedy, Epic will be crushed in the courtroom, Epic will be discussed as a business enterprise that threw it all away in every business college from here to eternity. Goodby Epic. Hope you enjoyed your 15 minutes of fame.
tehroflcopter profile picture
"30% or 0%?"

I think that the issue is that you do not have an alternative with a more modest and reasonable processing fee. Credit card processing is a few points in general, and Epic's own store is 12%. Is 30% reasonable for processing transactions? I think it is not. If the default fees were 15% and you could acquire customers via trading points to the platform for promotion then we would be in a better place. I think that Epic Games' store is awesome and I would love to have a curated store with good content on all platforms. Why shouldn't this be allowed? Certainly it makes sense for there to be an agreement in place where there is a modest revenue flow to the platform provider that is not zero percent for access. I bet if they allowed stores at some percentage to come on board, with some sort of commitment to security then everyone would be a winner. You know, like how a handful of businesses already have decreased rates due to their business having more difficult margins? Apple leaves themselves open to this by giving exemptions to amazon and netflix, and there is no good reason to limit those exemptions to other businesses that are operating at that scale like Epic.
They do offer hosting, upgrade services, security and other things apart from just payment services.
Don’t like to pay the 30 % - leave the iOS platform owned and maintained by Apple .
Epic can then spend tons of $$ developing their own platform to sell their products for “free”
@fredrik2109 but no choice and others can do it much less. Why should customers or other be tied to the store. The only reason is to gain monopoly power and screw the customers and users on both fronts.
Why cannot others setup a store on appl? It is none of appls buisness after they sell the phone how people use it.

Epic can have store and sell its products at lower price. This benefits customers. Just to download a app you have to pay appl 30% is ridiculous. Lot of digital sales will be 30% cheaper if we get rid of the middle man appl, goog.

Screw all the mega companies we need more small and mid size companies where is a lot of innovation and job creation.

All these big companies do not even pay the fair share of taxes and hide the money in counties which have contributed little to nothing to the world economy
@NS100 "...have to pay appl (sic) 30% is ridiculous."

Then don't sign the contract. But EPIC wanted the benefits of access to AAPL's customers until success occurred as a direct result of that access but then breached the contract and disparage AAPL while discontinuing the percentage you AGREED to pay when EPIC signed the contract.

LOL - perhaps you didn't understand what it means to sign a contract and then violate the terms of that contract.
@combatcorpsmanVN you do. Do U understand meaning of monopoly and they screw both the customers and users. Appl has no right on the phone once they sell the phone.

As a user I need choices just like if buy a car I have choice where I can get my repairs done or where I can my tiers and how I pay.

Broader your legal knowledge instead of making comments Based on buying a few shares of appl stock. Which by the way is 2.3Trillion and net debt 130B almost no cash left after liabilities in debt.
They have no innovation since the iPhone so they are trying squeeze the users for.more money else the whole crap falls apart.
@NS100 Thus far, it's clear to see that you parrot the word "monopoly" w/o knowing the definition. Why don't you document precisely where AAPL has been adjudicated a monopoly (of course, after you look up the word: adjudicated.

This goes beyond the digital space to the retail space. There are fees if you want to place a product at a retailer.

These businesses have many upfront costs, it is their store. If Epic wants, they can set up their own store, nothing is stopping them.
I know virtually nothing about law. Beyond the fact that it is always fun to act against it, I mean. So, I have silly questions.

Why it was necessary to violate EULA before going to court? Can it be so that Epic made a stupid mistake and is somebody’s pawn now?

Is it in the spirit of the antitrust laws to prevent any coupling of hardware and software? Prevent an OS from installing, prevent apps from installing- serve 20 years... I guess that would be logical, huge, and hurt Apple making Hackintosh legal.

Can all that be a diversion while the real goal is the W^X policy and preventing the dream of a pocketable computer from coming true?

It is possible and easy and legal to bypass Google’s store, more so, Huawei assists anybody inclined to do so. However, everybody prefers Google’s store. If Epic wins and nothing changes, won’t that be funny?
Trading Places Research profile picture
@md#23 Not a lawyer either, but

Why it was necessary to violate EULA before going to court?
No. They thought they were being clever imo. Look, we got a Trojan past their reviewers!

Can it be so that Epic made a stupid mistake and is somebody’s pawn now?
They want more $

Is it in the spirit of the antitrust laws to prevent any coupling of hardware and software?

The point is protecting US consumers from the higher-than-market prices that come with true monopolies. Monopolies underproduce and overcharge, which is why natural monopolies like some utilities get regulated. Anyway, the final test is whether consumers are hurt. Apple has lowered, not raised prices, because they are not a monopoly.

Can all that be a diversion while the real goal is the W^X policy and preventing the dream of a pocketable computer from coming true?

I think that Epic watched Fortnite dropping down the Top Grossing charts, replaced by Roblox, and thinks they can be the scrappy underdog here. This is an ORCL like strategy of substituting lawyers for engineers and storytellers.
This is really thorough, thank you.

I hate Apple's OS and resent them after terrible experiences with my past two iPhones, and still hold a bit of a grudge over when I was a Qualcomm investor a few years ago. That said, I bought AAPL at $160 a few years back and have had a great time since, so despite it all, I'm inclined to be in Apple's camp anyway.

However, in addition to the rational arguments that you lay out, I have to make the point that Epic is a bunch of scumbags. The games contain casino-lite reward systems that hit the reward centers of the brain while you play, and Epic is brilliant at adjusting the gaming experience consistently enough and creatively enough to keep people playing essentially the EXACT SAME GAME over and over and over again for years. While the game itself is free, and one can earn upgrades simply by playing, it makes money by offering a constantly revolving sets of personalizations that are given value through the social media marketing. The cool pair of jeans that we fretted over as adolescents might now be a particular skin or "back bling" in the game - none of which actually give any advantage for game play, but the fashion implications of a particular setup or dance can be bizarrely compelling for its users. This is especially problematic since their whole business model is rooted in using Youtube and Tiktok celebrities to manipulate impulsive children into dumping their parents' money into their in-game purchases. My 10 year old kid has friends who have allegedly spent thousands of euros on useless in-game fashions because of this.

While I appreciate Epic's skill at doing what they do, I would be thrilled if this backfired on them.
BeaBaggage profile picture
so the play here is $U ? which has been under pressure
davel profile picture
Excellent piece. The South Park vid is on point..

Yes. Epic needs to make the case that iOS is a market unto itself. And Apple needs to somehow defend the open Mac developer mkt vs the closed mobile one.

That said. iOS in a sense is not closed. As Apple itself notes that by supporting industry standard interfaces you can do stuff on a web page where Apple does not take a cut.

But the broader question I think is let us break beyond the web and treat the App Store as a physical store. If epic wins, then the ruling should be applied to Macy’s or Target or any store really. Namely that a vendor that sells products in the store gets to dictate everything about their product in the store. That the owner of the store has no control over their property.

As Apple states, Apple owns about 15% of the mobile market. Hardly a monopoly. Epic can make the argument that google and Apple collude on terms and conditions, but they need to prove collusion. I don’t think through any discovery they can prove that google and Apple collude to create a 30% fee for paid apps.

So let us say epic wins. This of course breaks a big tent pole for Apple in terms of security of their environment. If I were Apple my response would be to charge epic fees for any and all infrastructure services for app distribution, data retention and management. I would charge them per copy of every app the company offers regardless whether it is free or not. This means if one user has fortnite on 5 devices epic gets billed for 5 separate items.

Also I would charge them for every update made in the store. So each and every point update of every application would incur a fee.
Tony Naples profile picture
@davel There are many ways Apple can charge if they lose this battle. I am not concerned that Apple would lose revenue in the long run.
However, I don't see Apple's App store as a retailer in one sense. If Apple wants 30% cut then they should pay for inventory much like retailers. Alternatively Apple like any retailer if the App Store is defined as a retailer, should have the right not to carry Epic products. Then strained logic would say that us restraint of trade because Appstore is only vehicle for user to add Apps, i.e. there is no competitive alternative.
I agree that Apple iPhone app store is a unique market. On a practical basis every user and developer in the world accepts this state of affairs.
Epic also has an argument that they as a profitable developer should not be responsible to support free Apps. That is Apple's problem.
I don't think EPIC will win on the merits of their case and this is a waste of time and money for Epic.
G H profile picture
@Tony Naples

Your pay-for-inventory plan ignores that the majority of apps are free to download, to support many scenarios. Just a few:

- introduce new customers to a product or service
- increase customer loyalty by a service or product vendor
- trade a "free" service to collect information about the user
- access the services of charitable or political organizations
- facilitate a separately-paid service's data collection (e.g. medical)
- create network effect to facilitate a separately-paid service
- "enterprise" apps (see below)

Look at it through Apple's eyes. Apple sincerely wants to facilitate free apps... but they're a for-profit corporation. How to square that circle? I say they're doing the best they can, and have shown no signs of unfairly exploiting the situation. What can be fairly described as lock-in to their walled garden, can also be fairly described as providing clear customer benefits such as genuinely private and secure intra-family and patient-doctor data sharing.

Also, despite its encyclopedic thoroughness, this article didn't mention enterprise apps, which is a category invented by Apple to meet companies' and other organizations' need for apps for their own proprietary use. Apple's 30% "tax" pays to distribute and support those as well.
davel profile picture
@Tony Naples

I think that the primary issue for Apple is control rather than profit. Remember for years the App Store was I believe a cost center as the cost to run it probably was greater than revenues or about break even. Only when the user base got large enough did it start generating measurable revenues.

But mostly I think it is control. The way mobile for Apple is set up is they curate the content. Ie they have rules in place on the limits that apps have in terms of content and tools ( api ) they can use to deliver apps.

From Apple’s point of view they garner the praise and insults of the Apple experience. For example , lawsuits were leveled at them because they throttled the system when the battery aged to create what Apple felt was as optimal and experience as they could provide. Apple was wrong here as they were not transparent in what they did. So what if epic for example is able to have its own App Store and offer apps on iOS? What if virus’s or Trojans are injected into the iOS system? Does Apple get sued as the platform owner? How does Apple respond when they discover an issue but epic says no we will do what we want? How does the user feel about the security of their phone? What if apps that use epic’s api don’t work the same or in a uniform way? Essentially you have android. Where developers currently deploy on iOS first because that is where the users are. But by taking away the App Store you essentially make iOS = android.

I think from a bigger picture standpoint iOS is like Macy’s. Macy’s gets to say what products you can purchase in the store and how the products are displayed. If Calvin Klein disagrees with Macy’s they can complain and they can work with the store to display their goods in a way they want. But ultimately Macy’s controls and if Calvin Klein doesn’t like it they have a right to not ship product to Macy’s, but they don’t have the right to tell Macy’s what to do on their property.

If Macy’s becomes too hard to work with they have no products and go bankrupt. But a vendor has no right to dictate to the store owner what they do in their property.
Bottom Line: Both parties signed a contract. AAPL abided by the contract and EPIC breached the terms of the contract. Then EPIC decided to do a scorched earth policy to disparage AAPL.

The end of AAPL speculation is hyperbole.
@combatcorpsmanVN I'm not familiar how it is in the US, but here you can sign a contract and just ignore all clauses that are unlawful. If the courts agree with you, it isn't a breach of contract because the clauses were illegal in the first place.
Vandooman profile picture
My negative experience with AAPL is this. When I completed a contract on an LG5, I had paid for the phone and there was no charge. When I completed a contract with AAPL for 4 I Phones, I was informed that my contract had automatically converted into a rental agreement and it would cost me 3 months rental to buy the phones. This is the point where the dealer convinces the customer they can flip to a new phone with a new contract at no charge. Instead, I did the math and concluded that if I paid the 3 months rental for the phones, I would get the money back every 3 months. So far I have recouped the money 4 times over. Nothing illegal involved however using fine print to cheat your customer is unethical. But most people throw up their hands and surrender. So my conclusion was that AAPL is an unethical organization and, aside from using their phones, I should avoid doing business with them, which I do.
Vandooman profile picture
@Vandooman NTW, a good way to deal with AAPL is to buy a second hand phone for $200 and save a fortune. Most people have no need for the newest phone.
@Vandooman Was that any of Apples doing or was it a dealer of some kind? I am in Europe and Apple have no such options here.
@fredrik2109 I am in the US and have never heard of such a thing happening.
I despise Apple with all my heart. I despise their ideology, their way of not acknowledging other companies advances even if they used them to build their success. Really, I can't stand Apple.

Even so, I think that Epic should suck it. Apple, whether I like it or not, built a hugely successful phone and environment and they were smart enough to lure many customers into it. They built the phone, they built the OS, they built the app store. They should be allowed to do as they please on it, even forbidding all 3rd party software if they wanted to.

Epic disagrees? OK, Epic, start by designing your own phone, then carry on to the OS and finally an app store and put your games in there without having to pay fees to anybody.

The big problem is that there is a large history of successful companies that were legally hit for being too successful (Microsoft and Google come to mind) which goes against all that I believe in.
Trading Places Research profile picture
@apertotes Remember regarding MSFT that all the important stuff got reversed on appeal
davel profile picture
@Trading Places Research
It got reversed because a different administration with a different set of premises decided to drop the case.

One benefit of being large and well funded is you have $ and time to await an outcome to your benefit.
Trading Places Research profile picture
@davel I make precisely that point here:

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The Microsoft Trial and The Default Setting Fallacy
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