Earlier this year, Epic Games filed a lawsuit against Apple and Google about the Play Store’s in-app billing rules. The complaint was brought against Apple on the grounds that the business is requiring developers to handle in-app purchases through Apple and to give the company a 30 percent cut of any income generated.
In a similar vein, the Epic Games Corporation filed a case against Google. However, according to the most recent court papers, in order to eliminate the risk, Google even discussed purchasing a portion or all of Epic Games corporation. Apple and Google have been accused of preserving monopolies and removing competition from the market.
The dispute between Apple, Google, and Epic Games gained momentum when both the App Store and the Google Play Store banned Epic Games’ Fortnite from their respective stores after the developer released an update that allowed players to pay directly to the developer for Fortnite’s in-app purchases.
Epic also claimed that Apple and Google had attacked the company’s operations in other areas, which was denied by both companies. If Epic wins the legal case, Apple and Google would be forced to make significant modifications to their App Store regulations, which would be extremely expensive for them.
According to a recent court filing, this was done in order to avoid the threat or danger of losing a significant amount of money in the legal dispute with Epic. Epic was also considered for acquisition by Google, which might have purchased part or all of the company.
“Google has gone so far as to share its monopoly profits with business partners to secure their agreement to fence out the competition, has developed a series of internal projects to address the ‘contagion’ it perceived from efforts by Epic and others to offer consumers and developers competitive alternatives and has even contemplated purchasing some or all of Epic in order to squelch this threat”, according to the latest report.
Specifically, Epic said in its lawsuit that Google makes use of its size, influence, power, and money in order to coerce other parties into entering into “anti-competitive arrangements that further entrench its monopolies.”
This was unbeknownst to us at the time, and because of the court’s protective order we’re just finding out now about Google’s consideration of buying Epic to shut down our efforts to compete with Google Play.https://t.co/HSS1edUrQm
— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) August 6, 2021
Tim Sweeney responded to reports that Google was considering purchasing Epic Games with the following tweet: “This was completely unknown to us at the time, and as a result of the court’s protective order, we’re only now learning about Google’s consideration of purchasing Epic in order to shut down our efforts to compete with Google Play.”
It’s unclear if this would have been a discussion to purchase Epic or some type of aggressive takeover effort on the company’s part.
As part of this discussion, Google also mentions the “frankly awful” sideloading experience that they developed, all while publicly praising Android as an “open platform.”