As the popular video game Fortnite developer Epic Games v. Apple’s three-week trial is coming to an end, Apple CEO Tim Cook will appeare in court for the first time to testify on Friday US local time.
The core of this lawsuit is the extremely popular game Fortnite. Last summer, the game was kicked out of the app store for bypassing Apple’s digital payment rules and establishing its own system. Apple receives a 30% commission from in-app purchases on iOS devices and does not allow alternative payment systems. The removal of Fortnite from the app store prompted Epic Games to file an antitrust lawsuit against it.
Epic Games accused Apple of exercising monopoly control over its Walled Garden iOS operating system. If app developers want to reach hundreds of millions of iPhone and iPad users, they will be forced to endure these cumbersome restrictions. But Apple argues that users can also buy apps in several other places, and Apple’s commission helps the company make its devices better and safer.
Several executives from both sides have appeared in court to testify, including Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi, and Apple partner and former head of marketing Phil Schiller, they all appeared in court earlier this week to testify. Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney was the first witness in the trial, which lasted nearly three weeks and is scheduled to end next Monday.
For Cook, this trial will be the latest example of potential hostility he faces. In the past few years, he has found himself increasingly being questioned by lawmakers and the media about whether Apple’s influence has been strong in the past. According to statistics, Apple has more than 1 billion active iPhones worldwide. Despite the outbreak of the new crown pneumonia epidemic and the economic disaster, Apple still achieved its highest sales and profit in its history during the holiday shopping season last year, which helped propel its market value to more than $2 trillion.