Wow. Right? 2020 is already a rollercoaster of a year and now we can throw in the fact that Apple, one of the biggest companies out there, just tossed out one of the biggest video games on the planet from its digital storefront. This is all very crazy, and yet, this is the reality in which we find ourselves in.
All of this is just noise, of course. Epic Games, the developer and publisher of Fortnite knew exactly what would happen today when it pushed a server-side update to the mobile game to match the console and PC versions of the game, bringing a discount to the game’s proprietary currency V-Bucks and adding a direct payment option to its Android and iOS apps, which violates the latter’s digital storefront rules and, as a result, Fortnite got pulled from Apple’s App Store.
Epic may have some altruistic goals here, trying to get both Apple and Google (and maybe even other digital storefronts out there) to drop the fees they attach to sales in those storefronts. But Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney also wants to put the Epic Games Store, another digital storefront, on iOS in the future, so it certainly wants to make money without paying fees as well.
Epic is also fanning some flames, too, because Apple is currently facing anti-trust investigations in the United States and European Union related to the App Store and fees associated with the storefront. Nothing about Apple charging a fee is new. Nothing about some companies out there and developers being unhappy about those fees is new. And it’s also not new that Apple doesn’t have any plans on changing those rules or those fees, either.
I’ve seen quite a few comments on the matter up to this point, with a lot of them saying that in its shift to a services company Apple has become less focused about being customer and/or developer friendly, but is now more focused on simply being a business and leaning as hard into that as possible. Even if it means sacrificing what customers might actually want.
That does feel like the case with the cloud streaming situation for video games. Apple’s App Store rules make it so cloud streaming platforms like Microsoft’s new xCloud or Google’s Stadia aren’t available on iOS devices. This particular decision irks me more than Apple’s App Store fees (mostly because those fees are pretty standard from digital storefronts), and it even had me questioning if I wanted to continue to support the company that’s making active decisions to limit what I can do and enjoy on my devices.
Not that that’s new, of course. Still, some decisions are more egregious than others.
As far as the fees are concerned, I do think Apple needs to be more consistent about the rules and stop playing favorites with some companies or services. Maybe Apple should just charge a blanket 10% fee for everything related to the App Store, whether it’s initial downloads and/or in-app purchases and subscriptions. It’s significantly less than the 30% it charges now, sure, but Apple would still be rolling in the cash.
But, who knows. Maybe nothing is going to change at all and this is just how things are going to be. No cloud streaming video games on your iPad Pro, and no Fortnite in the App Store. It’s just wild.
What do you think of all this? How are you feeling about Apple these days? Are the company’s decisions making you consider jumping ship? Let me know what you think!
SOURCE: PhoneDog – Read entire story here.