Epic Games loses antitrust appeal against Apple as 2021 lawsuit ruling is upheld [UPDATED]

Apple's legal team successfully defend 9 of 10 claims, with the one lost claim forcing the company to allow in-app links for purchases outside the App Store.


Updated on April 24, 2023, at 1:45 p.m. PT/4:45 p.m. ET: Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has tweeted a statement after a court ruling in its case against Apple.

The long-running legal battle between Epic Games and Apple has reached another bookend as a US appeals court ruled mostly in Apple’s favor against Epic’s claim that the iPhone tech giant is a monopoly. This week, a court ruled in favor of Apple in 9 out of 10 claims in the appeal, with the one outlier going in Epic’s favor. While Epic could not convince the appeals court that Apple holds a monopoly in the mobile app space, it did convince the court to force Apple to allow in-app links for purchases outside of the App Store ecosystem.

The latest outcome in the legal battle between Apple and Epic Games was reported via Bloomberg. In said ruling, a US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed much of a previous decision by a lower court judge and rejected much of Epic’s claim that Apple’s online marketplace policies violate federal law by banning third-party apps marketplaces utilized on its operating system.

Apple App Store
Apple's business practices regarding banning of apps on its App Store was at the center of Epic Games' rejected claims that the company holds on monopoly in the mobile marketplace.
Source: Apple

The three-judge panel went on to share the conclusion of its decision regarding Epic’s claims:

Apple went on to claim that the ruling was a resounding victory for the company following a lengthy court battle with Epic Games, but it disagrees with the one ruling against it and may further review and appeal.

The one claim that didn’t go in Apple’s favor is in regards to third-party marketplaces and payments on apps within its ecosystem. Under the ruling, Apple would be forced to allow developers to include links within their apps that would take users to payment pages outside the purview of Apple’s App Store. Third-party payment methods have been a stick in Apple’s craw since the 2021 ruling that it must allow third-party payment implementation, which the company has previously tried to appeal.

Nonetheless, it’s a bigger black eye for Epic Games, which came out behind in much of the ruling that Apple’s business practices do not constitute a monopoly. Be sure to read up on our previous Epic Games v. Apple coverage and stay tuned for further details as we continue to follow this story.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

From The Chatty
Hello, Meet Lola