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Forums - Gaming Discussion - Apple removes Fortnite from app store, cant connect to servers. Epic Games Sues.

padib said:
RolStoppable said:

No, padib. There's only Switch for handheld gaming. Nintendo owns pretty much 100% of the market. But if you insist on your logic that there are many more options than Switch (which would then be PlayStation, Xbox, PC, smartphones, tablets etc.), then the same has to apply the other way around for Apple's store that houses games in addition to all sorts of other apps. Apple doesn't control the game market, heck, they are not even remotely close within their own segment of mobile gaming where iOS has a marketshare of ~25%.

Did you know that every iPhone user can open Safari and buy Fortnite microtransactions directly from Epic's site without Apple getting a cut from the transaction? That is allowed by Apple. What Epic insists on with their lawsuit is that they are supposed to get direct access to the market that Apple built without having to compensate Apple for it in any form.

Epic's case against Google is very similar. Epic had pulled Fortnite from the Google Play store in 2019 to provide it only through their own store on Android, but then in 2020 Epic brought Fortnite back to Google Play. The issue that Epic has is that they want direct access to the market that Google built without having to compensate Google for it in any form.

Going further with this, you have to ask yourself why Epic didn't target Nintendo, PS and Xbox yet, because all console manufacturers' ecosystems are even more closed than iOS. The reason why Epic didn't do it is because a core part of their strategy is to instrumentalize gamers to pressure other big companies into giving in to their demands. But what would happen if Epic tried to turn console gamers against console manufacturers over their free-to-play game; do you think console gamers would side with Epic on this? The answer is obvious, hence why Epic's way of how they go about all of this is so laughably inconsistent and full of holes.

You're wrong Rol about the first part. While there are many options for gaming on the go (including on Smartphones), there are only a few options for handheld computing, two to be exact at the OS level.

As for everything you're saying against Epic, I mean I thought I made it clear that their case is garbage. Isn't that my point anyway?

Their strawman argument only gives more legitimacy to Apple, who, apart from this flimsy case by Epic, is moving towards monopoly territory. You should be concerned about it.

@LurkerJ, who said anything about being offended? I just asked you to stop that's all.

To stop what? You asked me to stop and informed that "I am being respectful to you", you wouldn't say unless you wanted to imply that I was disrespectful. What a random thing to say anyway, in fact, your last two posts are full of random statements that don't say anything at all. 

For the example, the underlined part: How are they exactly heading that way with a shrinking market? What recent practices imply to you that Apple is becoming more controlling? Why should I be more concerned when there is enough competition to keep Apple in check? You give no explanation whatsoever.

The truth of the matter is that iOS becomes more open with every annual update, and the app store policies have been largely the same for most developers since its inception, and those policies don't deviate from the norms the industry has been accustomed to. In addtion, iPhones sales ceiling has been established and the only forward is selling less iPhones (with updates cycles getting longer every year), I just don't understand what metrics you're looking at that makes you believe Apple is heading down a non-consumer friendly path. 



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LurkerJ said:
padib said:

Nintendo's overall marketshare for games is too small relatively speaking. Also, iOS is a multi-function OS, so it encompasses everything from Productivity apps to leasure software.

In other words, you're drawing lines where it's convenient for you to draw them?

If anything, the fact that iOS allows you to do a lot more than just gaming and without charging the consumers or the developers most of the time, makes iOS a lot friendlier environment to developers than eShop.

  • Apps that are free to you aren’t charged by Apple.
  • Apps that earn revenue exclusively through advertising — like free games & Youtube — aren’t charged by Apple.
  • App business transactions where users sign up or purchase digital goods outside the app aren’t charged by Apple (including Spotify).
  • Apps that sell physical goods — including ride-hailing and food delivery services, to name a few — aren’t charged by Apple
  • 84 percent of the apps in the App Store pay nothing to Apple when you download or use the app

And again, this laser-focus criticism of Apple when they only have less than 25% market share globally makes no sense whatsoever.

To clarify, I don't believe the Switch is a monopoly for creating the sole exciting handheld environment that devs profit from, because that environment wouldn't have existed without their product in the first place. 

Except that this is patently false. One of the reasons the xCloud and Stadia apps fell through was because of this. Then there are less high profile cases like LMG's Floatplane having to discontinue the app for the same reason. 

The other as emulation, which made jack-all since the product is just an streaming interface and then was, well, rating... which makes less sense when you take into account that this is an online service and online interactions cannot be rated



I think it is going to be very hard for anyone to prove Apple has a monopoly. Android is a big competitor that holds a large market share. Neither even comes close to the most commonly cited example of Microsoft. They were somewhere in the 90%+ range.

The other issue, is that it is not actually illegal to have a monopoly. It is only illegal to abuse a monopoly to gain an advantage. Considering the 30% fee is standard across multiple digital stores, and Apple has never raised their price, I am not sure where the abuse is.



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theRepublic said:
I think it is going to be very hard for anyone to prove Apple has a monopoly. Android is a big competitor that holds a large market share. Neither even comes close to the most commonly cited example of Microsoft. They were somewhere in the 90%+ range.

The other issue, is that it is not actually illegal to have a monopoly. It is only illegal to abuse a monopoly to gain an advantage. Considering the 30% fee is standard across multiple digital stores, and Apple has never raised their price, I am not sure where the abuse is.

The abuse is closing their OS to sideloaded applications and distribution services. If you could load up Cydia or AltStore by downloading a profile from the Internet, tap away a couple warnings and switches and then run everything Apple wouldn't sell to you, then this case would be complete bullshit as the judge could just say "make your own store" and tell people to download it from their site. 

The main difference between console and iPhone being that console game making tools are essentially tied to MS, whereas making an .ipa file is not any harder than making an .apk 

So loading a second store into a XBO is impossible because then the hardware wouldn't even run the games designed for it. Sideloading an .ipa into iOS would be easy if instead of revoking the ability of people to do so, they allowed end users to sideload normally like they do on Android after pestering them not to. 



Apple is in a stronger position than Android or MS Windows, because it owns HW, FW and OS, just like a console maker. Android and Windows OTOH are just pieces of SW, albeit very important, PC makers, or DIY end users, put together with HW and other SW, the resulting systems were eventually recognised by laws and judgements to be essentially born free and as open as possible, without the makers of any part allowed to seize total control of the marketplace.
Anyhow, if it happened that judges determined iPhone is too big to be treated as a simple competitor regarding antitrust laws, then its monopoly on marketplace could be questioned. But Epic challenging the current situation with a blatant breach of contract, furthermore done not for a free market, but for its own closed marketplace, isn't doing any favour to the freedom front.



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Ka-pi96 said:
padib said:

Apple is monopolistic, of that there is no doubt.

The problem is that this case gives Apple more ground to behave how it already does.

Apple is no saint, but Epic is handing them legitimacy on a silver platter. No one company should have so much control over the usage of software over such a large portion of the population, and be allowed to enforce such strict rules that gauge money out of those forced to use their platform, and forces competition out of the race.

There's an issue with Apple, the government is already on the case of all big IT companies (there was a hearing at the beginning of the month). This case with Epic is just making things worse for consumers, because in the end it just means we pay more and more goes into Apple's pockets and, over the long run, we have less options due to less competition.

My problem with this is that there's literally not a single person that's "forced to use their platform". Even if you "had" to have a phone there are other options than getting an Apple one.

Plus I know you're talking about the US government and I don't know how it is over there, but as a Brit I know the UK government wouldn't have a leg to stand on if they were to criticise Apple for this since they're much worse when it comes to monopolies (TVs), have no competition unlike Apple, and will send you to jail if you don't pay them while Apple won't/can't do anything if you don't pay them.

I don't really see how this Apple winning would make things worse for consumers though. It would just maintain the status quo, no? Apple would still get their 30% cut, just like they always have. The competition would be pretty much unaffected either way too, so why would things be worse?

In capitalism things do tend to get worse by default. Maintaining the status quo means things are getting worse. The only things that keep things at least a bit balanced are infrequent interference by the law to reign in monopolistic and immoral behavior. So yeah, if Apple gets a clean win here things will get worse, just like they always do.

Then we have to wait for the next entity to try and take them to court.



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padib said:

You're wrong Rol about the first part. While there are many options for gaming on the go (including on Smartphones), there are only a few options for handheld computing, two to be exact at the OS level.

As for everything you're saying against Epic, I mean I thought I made it clear that their case is garbage. Isn't that my point anyway?

Their strawman argument only gives more legitimacy to Apple, who, apart from this flimsy case by Epic, is moving towards monopoly territory. You should be concerned about it.

@LurkerJ, who said anything about being offended? I just asked you to stop that's all.

Apple isn't moving towards monopoly territory at all when their OS marketshare on smart devices isn't even close to 50% and has no chance to cross that mark. For a monopoly, the absolute minimum would be 90%, but practically it has to be above 95%. Google is a lot closer than Apple to that, but at the same time Android is a more open OS than iOS, so I see nothing to be seriously concerned about.



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AsGryffynn said:
theRepublic said:
I think it is going to be very hard for anyone to prove Apple has a monopoly. Android is a big competitor that holds a large market share. Neither even comes close to the most commonly cited example of Microsoft. They were somewhere in the 90%+ range.

The other issue, is that it is not actually illegal to have a monopoly. It is only illegal to abuse a monopoly to gain an advantage. Considering the 30% fee is standard across multiple digital stores, and Apple has never raised their price, I am not sure where the abuse is.

The abuse is closing their OS to sideloaded applications and distribution services. If you could load up Cydia or AltStore by downloading a profile from the Internet, tap away a couple warnings and switches and then run everything Apple wouldn't sell to you, then this case would be complete bullshit as the judge could just say "make your own store" and tell people to download it from their site. 

The main difference between console and iPhone being that console game making tools are essentially tied to MS, whereas making an .ipa file is not any harder than making an .apk 

So loading a second store into a XBO is impossible because then the hardware wouldn't even run the games designed for it. Sideloading an .ipa into iOS would be easy if instead of revoking the ability of people to do so, they allowed end users to sideload normally like they do on Android after pestering them not to. 

A made up artificial difference so that, again, you can draw arbitrary distinctions on why only iOS is guilty of being a closed environment. I must be imaging all the apps, costume software and Linux on PS3. All made their way to various consoles from different generations that ran perfectly side by side without compromising how the console originally was intended to function. 



vivster said:
Ka-pi96 said:

My problem with this is that there's literally not a single person that's "forced to use their platform". Even if you "had" to have a phone there are other options than getting an Apple one.

Plus I know you're talking about the US government and I don't know how it is over there, but as a Brit I know the UK government wouldn't have a leg to stand on if they were to criticise Apple for this since they're much worse when it comes to monopolies (TVs), have no competition unlike Apple, and will send you to jail if you don't pay them while Apple won't/can't do anything if you don't pay them.

I don't really see how this Apple winning would make things worse for consumers though. It would just maintain the status quo, no? Apple would still get their 30% cut, just like they always have. The competition would be pretty much unaffected either way too, so why would things be worse?

In capitalism things do tend to get worse by default. Maintaining the status quo means things are getting worse. The only things that keep things at least a bit balanced are infrequent interference by the law to reign in monopolistic and immoral behavior. So yeah, if Apple gets a clean win here things will get worse, just like they always do.

Then we have to wait for the next entity to try and take them to court.


That's definitely not true. Things can only get worse by changing. Getting worse IS a change. They can't get worse (or better) unless something changes.



Ka-pi96 said:
vivster said:

In capitalism things do tend to get worse by default. Maintaining the status quo means things are getting worse. The only things that keep things at least a bit balanced are infrequent interference by the law to reign in monopolistic and immoral behavior. So yeah, if Apple gets a clean win here things will get worse, just like they always do.

Then we have to wait for the next entity to try and take them to court.


That's definitely not true. Things can only get worse by changing. Getting worse IS a change. They can't get worse (or better) unless something changes.

I wouldn't call corporations' ongoing revenue optimizations "change". It's the same they did 100 years ago, it's natural progress. I wouldn't necessarily call it a "change" when Apple switches to 8 year old child laborers from 10 year old child laborers because they're slightly cheaper and last longer. But if you want to go semantics, let's call what corporations do unhindered "passive change" because it happens naturally if we want to or not. And let's call changes in the law "active change" because someone has to actually do something for things to change.

Basically unchecked capitalism will always get worse if no one does anything against it.

Last edited by vivster - on 26 August 2020

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