More technology companies are joining either side of the legal battle between Epic Games, the maker of Fortnite, and Apple, with PC games giant Valve being the latest firm to get caught up in the melee, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, February 25.
The fight came to a head in August 2020 when Fortnite was pulled from the iOS App Store in a feud between Epic Games and Apple over user agreement terms.
Epic is looking to get testimony from online-dating company Match Group, the owner of Tinder and other apps, and from a former Apple executive, the Journal reported. Epic’s lawyers are planning to question Apple CEO Tim Cook.
Apple has subpoenaed numerous tech companies — Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, Amazon.com, Samsung — and recently subpoenaed Valve, according to a court filing. Valve, however, has challenged the iPhone maker’s demand for six years of Steam sales and other data.
Apple maintains that Valve’s sales data holds vital information that could help its case with Epic Games. Valve stated that it’s private financial information. Valve competes against Epic’s digital PC games storefront.
“Apple has, for lack of better words, salted the earth with subpoenas to other participants in the market,” Judge Thomas Hixson told Valve’s lawyers on Wednesday, February 24, per the WSJ. “So don’t worry, it’s not just you.”
Apple was originally requesting data from 30,000 games available on both Epic and Valve’s digital stores. It is now asking for information from 436 games, including Grand Theft Auto V. Valve stated it would be a monumental task for its 350 employees to get all of the data.
Epic Games filed an antitrust lawsuit against Apple in the European Union. The Fortnight creator said there should be a more balanced playing field for developers and consumers. The complaint accuses Apple of snuffing out payments and other competitors by instituting restrictions.
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