The Fortnite iOS version is unlikely to return to the Apple App Store anytime soon. In fact, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney estimates that it could take as long as five years.
Fortnite has been embroiled in ongoing legal battles with Apple and Google around the world that were kicked off when Epic Games introduced the "Epic Direct Payment" system into the mobile version of its Battle Royale. This resulted in the game being pulled from the Apple App Store within a few hours and removed from Google Play a few more hours after that. Now, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has an update on what's going on with Fortnite on mobile.
Why We'll Have to Wait a Long Time to Play the Fortnite iOS Version
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney shared an e-mail that he sent to Apple Executive and Fellow Phill Schiller regarding the Fortnite iOS version, promising to adhere to all App Store guidelines going forward.
"Epic has asked Apple to reactive our Fortnite development account," Sweeney's e-mail read. "Epic promises that it will adhere to Apple's guidelines whenever and wherever we release products on Apple platforms."
"Whether Epic chooses to bring Fortnite back to iOS consumers depends on whether and where Apple updates its guidelines to provide for a level playing field between Apple In-App Purchase and other methods of payment," the e-mail continued.
Sweeney sent this e-mail based on Apple's public statements that indicated it would allow Epic Games to return to the iOS App Store.
"Apple lied," Sweeney said in a tweet. "Apple spent a year telling the world, the court, and the press they’d 'welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else.' Epic agreed, and now Apple has reneged in another abuse of its monopoly power over a billion users."
Rather unsurprisingly, Apple rejected Epic's request as shown in a response from lawyer Mark. A Perry of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher.
"Epic committed an intentional breach of contract, and breach of trust, by concealing code from Apple and making related misrepresentations and ommissions," the e-mail response read.
"In light of this and other statements since the court's decision, coupled with Epic's duplicitous conduct in the past, Apple has exercised its discretion not to reinstate Epic's developer program account at this time. Furthermore, Apple will not consider any further requests for reinstatement until the district court's judgment becomes final and nonappealable."
The ongoing legal battles are far from over, and Tim Sweeney estimates that it could take as long as 5 years for the court case to work its way through the system (and it's already been over a year). In short: don't get your hopes up to play the Fortnite iOS version anytime soon.
Do you miss the ability to play Fortnite on Apple devices? Do you think Epic Games will eventually win its case? Let us know in the comments below!