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Epic calls on appeals court to overturn App Store monopoly ruling in new filing

Epic calls on appeals court to overturn App Store monopoly ruling in new filing

Categories: Financial
Posted: January 21, 2022

Epic’s appeal of the ruling in its legal battle with Apple has officially kicked off today. In a new filing with the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Epic urges the court to overturn the initial verdict, arguing that Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers “erred” her ruling that the App Store and its guidelines do not violate antitrust laws…

As a refresher, both Apple and Epic Games are appealing the ruling from Judge Rogers. The original ruling from Judge Rogers required that Apple adjust its App Store guidelines to allow developers to link out to third-party payment options. Judge Rogers, however, ruled that Apple did not hold a monopoly on the market in question.

As first reported by Bloomberg, Epic argues that it has proven that Apple “unlawfully” holds a monopoly both in terms of iOS app distribution and in-app payment solutions:

Epic told the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that a lower-court judge “erred” in finding that App Store rules and restrictions didn’t violate antitrust law. Epic had shown that “Apple unlawfully maintains its monopolies in the iOS app distribution and in-app payment solutions markets by expressly excluding all competitors,” the game maker said in its filing. Moreover, Apple has “ample economic power to coerce developers” into using its own payment system, Epic said.

Epic asked the court to overrule the ruling and send the case back to U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers in Oakland, California, with instructions on how to address issues raised in its antitrust suit. “If not reversed, this decision would upend established principles of antitrust law and, as the district court itself recognized, undermine sound antitrust policy,” the game maker said in its filing.

Elsewhere in the appeal, Epic cited the Mac as evidence Apple is able to offer “far less recreative alternatives” for app purchases and installations. It also references Apple’s “less restrictive alternatives” for physical goods and services on iOS.

Again, Apple is also appealing the ruling from Judge Rogers over her decision that the company must allow developers to link out to third-party payment options. On the flip side, Apple also described the ruling as a “huge win” and a “resounding victory” for the App Store. Apple has not yet filed its initial briefing in its quest to appeal the ruling.

You can read Epic’s full filing with the Court of Appeals below. The game maker is calling on the appeals court to overturn the ruling and send it back to Judge Rogers.

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