CARY – Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney is adding fresh fuel to his fires of criticisms against tech giants Apple and Google over how they control commerce through their app stores.
“What the world really needs now is a single store that works with all platforms,” Sweeney told Bloomberg News in Seoul, South Korea, on Tuesday. “Right now software ownership is fragmented between the iOS App Store, the Android Google Play marketplace, different stores on Xbox, PlayStation, and Nintendo Switch, and then Microsoft Store and the Mac App Store.”
Sweeney, who owns the majority interest in privately held Epic, has sued both companies in courts around the world. Apple has banned Epic’s Fortnite game and sales through its App Store, a move that triggered an antitrist suit by Epic. In turn, Apple sued Epic for creating a workaround to avoid Apple’s 30% fees. Epic has sued Google as well.
And he says Epic already is working to create a means “to buy software in one place, knowing that they’d have it on all devices and all platforms,” he told Bloomberg.
Sweeney is in Seoul to talk about the gaming industry at the Coalition for App Fairness’s Global Conference on Mobile App Ecosystem Fairness.
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In a tweet, he noted news from Bloomberg about a Google group focusing on Epic and its globally popular Fortnite game.
“Google established a ‘Fortnite Task Force.’ What was the purpose of this shadowy group? To optimize Fortnite and Android together to ensure a great customer experience? To improve Google Play terms to convince developers to stay? Sadly no…” he tweeted.
Sweeney then linked to a Bloomberg story on the topic.
“It’s claimed that Google’s task force took advantage of a possible security issue for users sideloading Fortnite,” Android Authority reported. “The filing [as cited by Bloomberg] asserts that Google gives an app maker 90 days to address a security issue like this but that the search company disclosed the issue to ‘friendlies’ in the media within nine days.”
South Korea recently passed a law requiring tech companies to implement “Mobile Application Ecosystem Fairness.”
But according to Sweeney Apple is ignoring the law.
“Now Apple complies with oppressive foreign laws, which surveil users and deprive them of political rights. But Apple is ignoring laws passed by Korea’s democracy. Apple must be stopped,” he told Bloomberg.
Apple also has refused to reinstate Epic to its app store despite a judge’s order in a US federal case.
Sweeney also called Google “crazy.”