Microsoft offered to bring top Xbox games like ‘Halo’ to iPhone if Apple would loosen its App Store rules, court docs reveal

Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook.

  • Apple’s App Store doesn’t allow video game streaming services like Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass.
  • Microsoft offered to bring major first-party games, like “Halo,” to the iPhone for access, court documents show.
  • Apple refused the offer, Microsoft said, and Game Pass only works through the iPhone’s web browser.

Last year, as Microsoft was gearing up to turn its wildly popular Xbox Game Pass service into the world’s first “Netflix for gaming” service, it was privately negotiating with Apple to get the service onto iPhones.

That’s according to emails between Microsoft corporate vice president of business development Lori Wright and several Apple staffers unearthed by The Verge from legal documents related to Apple’s lawsuit with “Fortnite” maker Epic Games

Even though Microsoft offered to bring major Xbox games to Apple’s App Store, Apple apparently wouldn’t budge and refused to allow the service onto the App Store in any form.

“Our proposal for bringing games through individual apps was designed to comply with App Store policies,” Xbox cloud gaming head Kareem Choudhry told The Verge. “It was denied by Apple based on our request that there be a single streaming tech app to support the individual game apps.”

On the contrary, Apple said in a statement: “Unfortunately, Microsoft proposed a version of [Game Pass] that was not compliant with our App Store Review Guidelines, specifically the requirement to use in-app purchase to unlock additional features or functionality within an app.” 

In-app purchases, or IAPs, have been a major sticking point for Apple’s App Store rules.

Through the App Store, anything sold must pass through Apple’s payment system where Apple usually takes a 30% cut — and Microsoft’s games have IAPs that circumvent that system, Apple said.

Choudhry rejected that assertion to The Verge, saying, “The reasons for rejection were unrelated to in-app purchase capabilities.” Apple didn’t respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Apple and Microsoft had a public spat over Xbox Game Pass on iPhone last year that resulted in Apple rolling out a new policy for video game streaming services that would require each game on a service to be individually approved before being allowed on the App Store.

“The App Store was created to be a safe and trusted place for customers to discover and download apps, and a great business opportunity for all developers,” an Apple spokesperson told Insider last year. “Before they go on our store, all apps are reviewed against the same set of guidelines that are intended to protect customers and provide a fair and level playing field to developers.”

Though Microsoft publicly pushed back on the policy, and said at the time that “this remains a bad experience for customers,” the newly reported documents suggest it was privately willing to play by Apple’s App Store rules. 

For now, the only way to access Xbox Game Pass cloud streaming on an iPhone or iPad is through the web browser.

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Hundreds of scam apps caused a surprise $42 monthly charge to land on millions of Android users’ wireless bills

Android smartphone
  • Millions of Android users were plagued by scam apps that placed charges on their wireless bills.
  • Users were tricked by a fake prize into providing their phone numbers, Zimperium reported.
  • Google says that all of the apps identified by Zimperium have been removed from the Play Store.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A massive scamming campaign recently plagued the Google Play Store, affecting millions of Android users.

The scam took place via more than 200 apps run by attackers to scam money from its downloaders, security firm Zimperium reported.

Zimperium, a member of the Google App Defense Alliance which scans applications before publishing in the Google Play Store, estimates that 10 million Android users globally were affected by this scam.

The applications posed as seemingly normal downloads, hiding under facades like “Photo Effect Pro,” “Daily Horoscope & Life Palmestry,” and “Free Coupons 2021.” The apps would notify downloaders that they won a prize and would redirect them to enter their phone number on a specific webpage.

However, by entering their information, users were actually submitting their phone number to an SMS service that would start charging their phone bill about $42 per month.

“Forensic evidence of this active Android Trojan attack, which we have named GriftHorse, suggests that the threat group has been running this campaign since November 2020,” Zimperium stated in their findings. “These malicious applications were initially distributed through both Google Play and third-party application stores.”

Scams like GriftHorse take advantage of small screens, local trust, and misinformation to trick users into falling for their scams and downloading their apps, Zimperium explained. They also prey on “frustration or curiosity” when they try to accept their fake prize. According to Zimperium, the “level of sophistication, use of novel techniques, and determination” of the threat actors had allowed them to remain undetected.

Google says that all of the apps identified by Zimperium have been removed and the developers of the apps have been banned, but the scam will have lasting effects, WIRED reported. Android users who have not stopped the charges have faced unwanted additions to their wireless bill of over $230.

To prevent scams, the Federal Communications Commission recommends consumers “think twice” before clicking any links and to report any unusual activity. If you sent money to a scammer, the Federal Trade Commission recommends your report the payment right away to reverse the transaction before filing a report with the FTC who can build a case against the scammers.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Former Apple engineer says the button on iPhones asking apps not to track you is a ‘dud’ that gives users a ‘false sense of privacy’

Apple Privacy
  • In April, Apple rolled out a privacy feature that allows users to ask apps not to track their data.
  • A new study found popular iPhone apps are still collecting user data – even if they’re asked not to.
  • Apple claims “what happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.” A former employee says argues that’s not the case.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Johnny Lin, a former Apple engineer and co-founder of the software company Lockdown Privacy says Apple’s “Ask App Not To Track” button is a “dud” that gives users “a false sense of privacy,” according to a Washington Post report.

Even if users request apps not to collect their activity across other companies’ apps and websites, popular iPhone apps like Subway Surfers still collect personal data, a new study by Lockdown Privacy determined.

“We found that App Tracking Transparency made no difference in the total number of active third-party trackers,” the study says. “We further confirmed that detailed personal or device data was being sent to trackers in almost all cases.”

Sybo, the company that makes Subway Surfers, told The Washington Post that “in order for the game to function properly, some data is communicated to Ad Networks,” but did not explain why detailed personal information was required. “As a company, we do not track users for advertising purposes without their consent,” Sybo added.

“When the user selects ‘Ask App Not to Track,’ the app is informed that the user would not like to be tracked by any means, and all developers – including Apple – are strictly required to comply with the user’s choice,” an Apple spokesperson told Insider. “If we discover that a developer is not honoring the user’s choice, we will work with the developer to address the issue, or they will be removed from the App Store.”

Lockdown Privacy’s findings are in stark contrast to Apple’s privacy-focused marketing campaigns, highlighted in advertisements like this giant billboard in Las Vegas claiming “What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.”

A 2019 Apple privacy advertisement in Las Vegas
A 2019 Apple privacy advertisement in Las Vegas

Critics of the ad have called it misleading. Much of what users do on their iPhones and the data they generate doesn’t stay on their devices. iPhones routinely send some data to wireless carriers, websites, app developers – and to Apple’s own servers and services.

Apple recently announced plans to update its iOS software to scan iPhones for child sexual abuse imagery, but has since delayed the plan after criticism from privacy advocates.

Read the original article on Business Insider

‘Fortnite’ may not return to iPhones for up to 5 years, if ever

Fortnite (loot chest)
  • It sounds like “Fortnite” isn’t coming back to the iPhone anytime soon.
  • Epic says it won’t bring the game back to the iPhone unless Apple allows alternate payment forms.
  • Apple says it won’t even consider allowing Epic back until the the companies’ legal spat is over.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

It sounds like “Fortnite” won’t be back on Apple’s iPhone anytime soon.

Based on the most recent exchanges between “Fortnite” maker Epic Games, Apple’s App Store leader Phil Schiller, and a member of Apple’s legal team at Gibson Dunn, relations between the two companies are as icy as ever.

In a letter sent by Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney to Apple App Store leader Phil Schiller, things start out friendly enough. Sweeney started by asking Schiller to reinstate Epic’s development account, which is needed for “Fortnite” to operate on Apple’s iOS.

“Epic has asked Apple to reactivate our ‘Fortnite’ development account,” Sweeney said to Schiller. “Epic promises that it will adhere to Apple’s guidelines whenever and wherever we release products on Apple platforms.” He added that this “depends on whether and where Apple updates its guidelines to provide for a level playing field between Apple In-App Purchase and other methods of payment.”

In other words, “Fortnite” will only return to iPhones when Apple allows Epic to circumvent Apple’s App Store payment system – an argument that was at the heart of the recent lawsuit between Apple and Epic.

In a response, Apple’s attorney said the company isn’t even considering that reinstatement until the legal spat between the two companies, “becomes final and nonappealable.”

And that may not be for another five years, Sweeney said.

“‘Fortnite’ will be blacklisted from the Apple ecosystem until the exhaustion of all court appeals,” he tweeted on Wednesday, “which could be as long as a 5-year process.”

Fortnite (Epic payment through iOS)
An image of the “Fortnite” update that included the ability to pay Epic Games directly rather than paying through Apple.

Apple has repeatedly refused to allow alternative payment methods on the App Store, citing security concerns, and kicked “Fortnite” off the iPhone last year when Epic quietly added a way to pay Epic directly rather than paying through the App Store.

Subsequently, Epic sued Apple.

The result of that lawsuit, which Epic is appealing, was relatively minimal: In Apple’s case, the App Store is being forced to allow app makers the ability to link out and sell items directly to their users via external payment methods. That means app makers will be allowed to directly link out to alternative ways for purchasing, giving them a new way to avoid App Store commissions.

Apple has charged app makers on its iPhone and iPad App Store a commission for sales, ranging from 15 to 30%, which Epic Games sought to circumvent in an update to its hit game, “Fortnite,” in August 2020.

Epic, meanwhile, was ordered to pay millions in royalties to Apple, and Apple doesn’t have to allow alternative forms of payment on the App Store. Moreover, Epic is missing out on untold millions of dollars from potential “Fortnite” players on iPhone and iPad.

Apple declined to comment for this story, but confirmed the veracity of the letter from its lawyer. Epic Games representatives highlighted a post on Epic’s blog published on Wednesday that built on Sweeney’s tweets.

“Apple lied,” Sweeney said in the blog post. “Apple spent a year telling the world, the court, nd the press they’d ‘welcome Epic’s return to the App Store if they agree to play by the same rules as everyone else.’ Epic agreed, and now Apple has reneged in another abuse of its monopoly power over a billion users.”

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider

A judge just ruled a massive blow against Apple’s App Store business

Tim Cook Tim Sweeney 2x1
  • The judge in the case between “Fortnite” maker Epic Games and Apple issued a ruling on Friday.
  • Apple must allow app makers the ability to monetize their apps without paying Apple.
  • Epic has to pay Apple over $3.5 million in owed royalties, and still can’t charge users directly in apps.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

The end of the months-long legal saga between Apple and “Fortnite” maker Epic Games finally came on Friday when Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers issued a ruling with bad news for both parties – and a major blow to Apple’s App Store business.

In Apple’s case, the App Store is being forced to allow app makers the ability to link out and sell items directly to their users via external payment methods. That means app makers will be allowed to directly link out to alternative ways for purchasing, giving them a new way to avoid App Store commissions that can cost as much as 30%.

Apple is, “permanently restrained and enjoined from prohibiting developers from including in their apps and their metadata buttons, external links, or other calls to action that direct customers to purchasing mechanisms, in addition to In-App Purchasing and communicating with customers through points of contact obtained voluntarily from customers through account registration within the app,” the judge wrote in her permanent injunction ruling.

The ruling will go into effect in 90 days unless any motions to delay or reverse the order are successful.

Moreover, the judge chastised Apple for continuing to charge a 30% commission despite years of criticism from app makers. “Unlike those in the computer gaming market,” she wrote, “nothing other than legal action seems to motivate Apple to reconsider pricing and reduce rates.”

While that’s good news for Epic, it wasn’t the total victory Epic was hoping for: The company is being ordered to pay over $3.5 million owed royalties to Apple, and still isn’t able to directly charge “Fortnite” players for items within the game.

Apple charges app makers on its iPhone and iPad App Store a commission for sales, ranging from 15 to 30%, which Epic Games sought to circumvent in an update to its hit game, “Fortnite,” in August 2020.

Fortnite (Epic payment through iOS)
An image of the “Fortnite” update that included the ability to pay Epic Games directly rather than paying through Apple.

A new payment option was introduced in the update that said “Epic direct payment,” which is exactly what it sounds like: Instead of paying Apple, then Apple paying “Fortnite” maker Epic Games, you could pay Epic directly. Epic even charged less for the same virtual items.

By doing this, Epic intentionally circumvented paying Apple the cut it takes from app makers for selling through its digital storefronts. It was this move that caused “Fortnite” to be kicked off the App Store last year, and subsequently sparked a lawsuit between Epic and Apple.

In the suit, Epic Games accused Apple of operating a monopoly with its iOS App Store – a charge the judge on Friday disagreed with, ruling that Apple’s practices were not monopolistic.

The smartphone is an “essential computing device,” Epic CEO Tim Sweeney argued in a letter to Apple leadership, and opening up the platform would give iPhone users, “the rights and freedoms enjoyed on the world’s leading open computing platforms including Windows and macOS.”

In a better world, Sweeney argued, iPhone users could choose from a variety of App Stores with competing libraries of content and sales – a world where games like “Fortnite” could offer players the ability to pay less by purchasing stuff directly from Epic, or to download another store entirely (like, say, Epic’s own digital storefront, the Epic Games Store).

In defense, Apple argued that Epic’s foundational assertion is incorrect: The App Store is intentionally operated as a “walled garden,” the company says, because it protects users from harm.

Without Apple vetting each app before publishing, “the health of Apple’s ecosystem” is at risk, Apple Chief Legal Counsel Douglas Vetter argued. Moreover, Apple said that Epic knowingly, intentionally violated developer agreements it signed.

“Today the Court has affirmed what we’ve known all along: the App Store is not in violation of antitrust law,” Apple said in a statement sent to Insider. “As the Court recognized ‘success is not illegal.’ Apple faces rigorous competition in every segment in which we do business, and we believe customers and developers choose us because our products and services are the best in the world. We remain committed to ensuring the App Store is a safe and trusted marketplace that supports a thriving developer community and more than 2.1 million US jobs, and where the rules apply equally to everyone.”

Epic Games did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney took to Twitter to respond.

“Today’s ruling isn’t a win for developers or for consumers. Epic is fighting for fair competition among in-app payment methods and app stores for a billion consumers,” he wrote. “‘Fortnite’ will return to the iOS App Store when and where Epic can offer in-app payment in fair competition with Apple in-app payment, passing along the savings to consumers.”

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Apple removes anti-vaxx dating app Unjected from the App Store for ‘inappropriately’ referring to the pandemic. The app’s owners say it’s censorship.

Apple store
Apple reportedly removed the app after being contacted by a journalist.

  • Apple on Saturday removed Unjected, a dating app for the unvaccinated, from its App Store.
  • Apple told the app it “inappropriately refers to the COVID-19 pandemic in its concept or theme.”
  • Unjected said on Instagram that the app offered medical autonomy and freedom of choice.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Apple on Saturday removed Unjected, a dating-and-community app for unvaccinated people, from its App Store, in a move that the app’s owners likened to censorship.

“Apparently, we’re considered ‘too much’ for sharing our medical autonomy and freedom of choice,” the company said in a video posted on Instagram on Saturday. “So, of course, Apple removed us.”

Bloomberg News on Saturday reported that Apple removed the app after being contacted by a reporter.

Unjected posted a screenshot of the Bloomberg News story, saying: “We must use our voices. We are fighting the censorship of our freedoms and we won’t stop.”

Unjected launched in May as a dating app – one Twitter user called it “OK Q-Pid” – but had recently rolled out additional features. One was a list of businesses that “respect our autonomy and promote freedom.”

The company posted a screenshot of Apple’s take-down message, which read in part: “Specifically, your social networking app inappropriately refers to the COVID-19 pandemic in its concept or theme.”

Unjected said on Instagram, where it has about 25,000 followers, that it had deleted features, including a social feed and “blood bank,” in an attempt to stay on the App Store.

“We are looking into ways to get off of Apple and Google,” the company said. “But the easiest transition for us might be to make the website as great as possible since they can’t shut that down like the app.”

Insider has reached out to Unjected, Apple, and Instagram for comment.

The app on Sunday was still available on the Google Play store, where users mostly gave it middling reviews, including: “Amazing concept but holy $%^& this app is practically unusable.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

Elon Musk calls out Apple’s App Store fees for being a ‘global tax on the internet’

Elon Musk Tim Cook
  • Elon Musk said Apple’s App Store fees are “a de facto global tax on the internet.”
  • He also said “Epic is right” as the “Fortnite” creator remains locked in a legal battle with Apple.
  • Epic argues that the App Store is a monopoly since it takes a cut from all in-app purchases.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted Friday that “Epic is right” in its lawsuit alleging Apple’s App Store is anticompetitive.

The executive said that the company’s app store fees “are a de facto global tax on the Internet.”

Gaming giant Epic, the creator of “Fortnite,” is currently embroiled with Apple in a legal battle over the phone maker’s App Store. Apple takes a 15% to 30% cut from all in-app purchases, a practice that developers have long rallied against since they say it gives the company an unfair advantage. Apple’s own apps are exempt from the fee.

Epic kicked off the lawsuit in the summer of 2020 after it skirted Apple’s App Store fee by implementing its own payment system into the “Fortnite” game. Apple booted the app from its store as a result.

Facebook reportedly said in December that it would back Epic in its fight against Apple.

Apple is one of the Big Four tech companies that has faced considerable antitrust scrutiny in recent years, scrutiny that has only mounted since last summer. CEO Tim Cook testified before Congress alongside other executives as part of an ongoing investigation into online market competition.

Lawmakers are cracking down on tech’s biggest players for various reasons. For example, Google has been probed over its search and online ads business, and Apple has been scrutinized over its App Store.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Apple accepted Amazon’s request to boot an app that spots fake reviews from the App Store. Its owner has accused Amazon of bullying.

Tim Cook and Jeff Bezos
Apple CEO Tim Cook and Amazon chair Jeff Bezos.

  • Apple on Friday removed the app Fakespot from its App Store at Amazon’s request.
  • Amazon complained Fakespot misled customers, broke App Store rules, and posed a security risk.
  • Fakespot’s CEO said he was shocked by the turn of events.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Amazon got Apple to remove an app called Fakespot from the App Store on Friday, as reported by the Verge and CNBC.

Fakespot is an app that flags when product reviews on shopping apps like Amazon’s are likely to be fake or bot-generated.

According to the Verge, Amazon filed a complaint with Apple on June 8 saying that Fakespot displays Amazon’s website inside its app, which breaks Apple’s rules. The rules in question state that apps displaying third-party content must have permission from that third party.

Amazon also said Fakespot misleads customers and created a security risk with the way it put code into Amazon’s website to display its ratings.

“The app in question provides customers with misleading information about our sellers and their products, harms our sellers’ businesses, and creates potential security risks. We appreciate Apple’s review of this app against its Appstore guidelines,” an Amazon spokesperson told the Verge.

Fakespot’s CEO Saoud Khalifah denied the app has any security vulnerabilities, in an interview with the Verge. He added: “Amazon is willing to bully little companies like ours that showcase the cracks in their company.” He said Fakespot had 150,000 downloads when Apple removed it.

Read more: Fakespot, a startup that helps shoppers detect robot-generated reviews and phony sellers on Amazon and Shopify, used this pitch deck to nab a $4 million Series A

Saoud’s said Apple has given Fakespot little opportunity to fight back since Amazon initiated proceedings on June 8, and he told CNBC the takedown notice was sudden and unexpected. “Imagine going to a tenant and saying you have to take all your stuff, you have to leave right now. That’s how I feel right now,” he said.

Apple disputes this, saying it gave Fakespot “ample time” to resolve the issue with Amazon. Speaking to the Verge, Khalifah said between June 8 and Friday, the process consisted of Fakespot and Amazon arguing against each other with Apple providing no guidance. “I’m shocked Apple decided to side with Amazon without any proof,” he told the Verge.

At time of writing, Fakespot remains on the Google Play Store for Android phones, where it has more than 50,000 downloads.

Fakespot, Amazon, and Apple did not immediately respond when contacted by Insider for comment.

Fake reviews have been a big PR problem for Amazon. The tech giant is facing an investigation in the UK over fake reviews and in June, it issued a statement saying social media companies need to do more to stop the sale of fake reviews on their platforms.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Microsoft just took a direct shot at Apple’s controversial App Store policy with Windows 11

Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook.

  • Microsoft unveiled the next version of its major operating system, Windows 11, on Thursday morning.
  • Part of that event was a not-so-thinly veiled shot at Apple.
  • Going forward, app and game makers with their own payment systems can skip using Microsoft’s system.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Microsoft just took a shot at Apple with a feature in its next major operating system, Windows 11.

Going forward, the Microsoft Store will allow software makers to use their own payment systems – something Apple refuses to allow on its App Store. Rather than paying Microsoft a cut of each transaction, software makers can charge users directly with their own systems.

“If you do bring your own commerce engine, you keep 100% of your revenue,” Microsoft chief product officer Panos Panay said during a Microsoft livestream featuring Windows 11. “We keep zero.”

It’s a major point of contention between Apple and a variety of software makers, and it’s at the heart of ongoing litigation between “Fortnite” maker Epic Games and Apple.

Epic Games filed suit against Apple last summer after its hit game was pulled from Apple’s App Store.

Apple says it pulled the game because Epic violated the terms of its developer agreement when Epic implemented a payment system in the game that enabled players to circumvent Apple’s App Store. Epic says the App Store is a monopoly, and argues that iPhones and iPads are no different from computers.

Microsoft previously issued a letter to the court on behalf of Epic Games, and a Microsoft employee appeared as an expert witness during the trial. Arguments have ended for both sides in the ongoing case, and it’s unknown when the judge will issue a ruling.

Windows 11 is a free upgrade for Windows users, and is scheduled to launch “this holiday,” according to Microsoft.

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider

At its heart, the legal battle between Apple and ‘Fortnite’ maker Epic Games is about whether or not the iPhone is a computer

Fortnite 1984 Apple ad parody
  • Apple and “Fortnite” maker Epic Games are fighting in court over how the App Store works.
  • The three-week trial began wrapping up on Friday, with Apple CEO Tim Cook taking the stand.
  • At the heart of the fight is a fundamental disagreement on whether or not the iPhone is a computer.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Apple and “Fortnite” maker Epic Games are nearing the end of a protracted legal battle that could have major implications for the future of the App Store.

If Epic were to win the trial, Apple could be forced to allow alternative app stores on the iPhone and iPad – a result that could cost Apple billions of dollars in the long term.

At the heart of the fight is a disagreement on the nature of the iPhone: Epic argues it’s a computer, while Apple argues it’s fundamentally distinct. That argument is critical because of how the App Store operates, with Apple acting as the sole arbiter of what can and cannot be published on the iPhone.

If the iPhone is a computer, then the App Store is a monopoly, Epic’s lawyers argued. If it isn’t, and it’s a distinct category of device, then Apple says it is protecting its users by keeping alternative digital storefronts off the iPhone.

Read more: Big Tech has a new battleground: self-driving cars. Here’s how Jeff Bezos, Tim Cook, and Sundar Pichai hope to capture the $290 billion market.

“Epic is here, demanding that this court force Apple to let into its App Store untested and untrusted apps and app stores,” one of Apple’s lawyers, Karen Dunn, said in opening remarks. “Apple’s unwavering commitment to safety, security, reliability and quality does not allow that – and the antitrust laws do not require it.”

Tim Cook Tim Sweeney 2x1
Both Apple CEO Tim Cook, left, and Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney, right, will appear as witnesses during the trial.

On the contrary, Epic’s lawyer argued, the “walled garden” of the App Store isn’t intended for security: “It’s about business,” Katherine Forrest of law firm Cravath, Swaine, and Moore said. An expert witness interviewed by Forrest estimated Apple’s App Store margins in 2018 and 2019 to be around 75%.

Another major point of contention between the two companies: the 30% cut Apple takes from transactions on its App Store.

By refusing to open the iPhone to other app stores, Epic’s lawyers argued, the company is engaging in anticompetitive behavior. They compared Apple to a car dealership that takes a cut from gas stations every time you refuel.

Apple’s lawyers pointed to other digital storefronts, like the wildly popular Steam, as having established the 30% precedent.

“Apple did not establish the 30%,” Apple’s lawyer Karen Dunn said. “It was Steam, another game platform, that set the 30% in 2003, and by the time Apple entered the market in 2008 the 30% was, as Epic’s internal documents will show, industry standard.”

With Apple CEO Tim Cook taking the stand on Friday, witness testimonies are officially wrapped up. Lawyers for both companies are expected to deliver closing remarks on Monday.

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider