Apple refutes allegations of violating a US court order in the ongoing Epic Games lawsuit

Apple denied allegations of violating a court order regarding its App Store and urged a federal judge in California to dismiss Epic Games’ request to hold it in contempt. The iPhone maker made its arguments in a filing to U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers in Oakland, who oversaw Epic’s 2020 lawsuit accusing Apple of antitrust violations due to its stringent controls over app downloads and in-app transactions.

In its filing, Apple criticized Epic’s attempt to compel it to provide its tools and technologies to developers at no charge. Apple argued that Epic’s demands aimed to excessively interfere with its business operations in a manner that would primarily benefit Epic’s profitability.

Epic Games declined to comment on Apple’s filing. Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the ongoing dispute, which is part of a protracted legal battle between the two tech giants.

While Epic largely lost its case against Apple, Judge Rogers in 2021 mandated that Apple allow developers more freedom to guide app users to alternative payment methods for digital goods. Apple’s appeal of this injunction was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court in January.

In a court filing last month, Epic Games asserted that Apple was blatantly violating the court’s injunction by imposing a 27% fee on developers for certain purchases, rendering links for alternative payment options impractical. Epic also accused Apple of restricting certain apps from informing users about alternative payment methods.

Other tech companies, including Meta Platforms, Microsoft, Elon Musk’s X, and Match Group, echoed Epic’s arguments, informing Judge Rogers that Apple was in clear breach of the court’s order.

A similar case brought by Epic against Alphabet’s Google is pending in San Francisco, with a judge expected to issue a separate injunction affecting the Google Play Store later this year.

The lawsuit is Epic Games Inc v Apple Inc, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, No. 20-05640.

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