Apple doesn’t have to change its App Store rules to allow developers to embed links to their websites inside iPhone apps to take credit cards directly, an appeals court in San Francisco has decided.
According to CNBC, the stay means that the App Store can continue to prohibit developers from adding external links tother payment methods. That change had been ordered by Yvonne Gonzales Rogers, a federal judge in Oakland, earlier this year in the Apple vs. Epic Games battle and was scheduled to come into effect on Thursday.
“Apple has demonstrated, at minimum, that its appeal raises serious questions on the merits of the district court’s determination that Epic Games, Inc. failed to show Apple’s conduct violated any antitrust laws but did show that the same conduct violated California’s Unfair Competition Law,” the court ruled in an order reviewed by CNBC. Wednesday’s stay temporarily protects Apple’s control over its App Store and the fees it generates.
This is all part of an ongoing global legal battle between Apple and Epic. On Aug. 13,2020, Epic Games announced that it had introduced a new direct payment option in the Fortnite app for iPhone and iPad, allowing players to purchase 1000 V-Bucks for US$7.99 rather than $9.99 through Apple’s in-app purchase mechanism. Shortly thereafter, Apple removed the gamer from the App Store for violating store polices and followed up by shutting down the company’s developer account.
Epic immediately filed a lawsuit against Apple in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.In September 2020 Apple filed a countersuit to stop the game maker from using its own payment system for Fortnite. Apple also accused Epic of theft and sought extra monetary damages beyond breach of contract.