Federal Judge Rejects a Majority of Apple’s Counterclaims Against Epic Games in Fortnite Case

On Tuesday Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California threw out the majority of Apple’s counterclaims in Epic Games’ lawsuit related to its popular battle royal game, Fortnite. Rogers granted Epic’s motion for judgment related to Apple’s counterclaims, and ultimately rejected all but the breach of contract claim.

Rogers noted during a hearing Tuesday that Apple had failed to show any wrongful act related to Epic beyond the breach of contract claim.

In a statement following the ruling, Apple said that it disagreed with the court.

“We respectfully disagree with the Court’s decision and believe Epic’s conduct should be actionable under California tort law. It is clear however that Epic breached its contract with Apple,” Apple said in its statement.

Epic Games filed an antitrust lawsuit against Apple in Federal court in August after Apple removed Fortnite from the Apple App Store for iOS devices including iPhone and iPad. Apple removed the popular game from its store after Epic Games deployed an update that allowed users to buy Fortnite content directly from the company while circumventing Apple’s payment system, which typically charges a 30% commission per purchase. Google made a similar move in August as well on its Google Play store for Android devices.

The Epic-Apple fight over Fortnite is set to begin in May 2021. Google is still negotiating a trial date in its fight with Epic after a federal judge strongly rejected “October 2022” as a viable timeframe to begin a trial.

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