Apple Approves Epic Games’ Marketplace in EU After Initial Rejections Under Digital Markets Act

After facing multiple rejections, Apple has approved Epic Games’ third-party app marketplace for launch in the EU under the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA).

Earlier this year, Epic announced plans to bring its digital storefront and Fortnite back to iOS in Europe, but Apple initially rejected the submission twice. Apple cited concerns that Epic’s Games Store looked too similar to Apple’s App Store, prompting Epic to escalate the issue to European regulators.

Later on the same day, Apple conditionally approved the marketplace app, requiring Epic to make specific adjustments in a future update. The initial rejections were based on details like the position of the “Install” button and the “in-app purchase” label, which Apple found too similar to its own.

Epic argued that these naming conventions are standard across popular app stores and criticized Apple’s actions as arbitrary and obstructive, claiming they violated the DMA.

Apple Approves Epic Games' Marketplace in EU After Initial Rejections Under Digital Markets Act
Apple Approves Epic Games’ Marketplace in EU After Initial Rejections Under Digital Markets Act

Apple stated that it had approved the Epic Sweden AB Marketplace app but emphasized that Epic must still address the required changes.

Under Apple’s developer agreement, Epic agreed not to make its Game Store appear too similar to Apple’s App Store, but Apple found issues with the design and labeling of the download button. Despite these concerns, Apple noted that Fortnite’s app had already been approved.

This situation illustrates Apple’s strict enforcement of new rules permitting third-party app stores on iOS, potentially discouraging other developers from establishing their own distribution channels.

The DMA requires Apple to allow third-party app stores on the iPhone, as it is classified as a “gatekeeper” under EU law. Developers can also adopt new DMA rules to reduce commissions on in-app purchases, although the process involves a complex fee structure for using Apple’s technology.

Epic Games has long sought a way to reach iPhone customers without paying commissions on in-app purchases, leading to an extended legal battle with Apple. Despite losing most of its claims in U.S. courts, Epic continued to challenge Apple’s policies.

After Apple briefly terminated Epic’s developer account in the EU, regulators intervened. Epic remains committed to launching Fortnite on iOS and iPad in the EU and bringing its Game Store to the market, confirming the approval of its marketplace app on social media and to TechCrunch.

Michael Manua
Michael Manua
Michael, a seasoned market news expert with 29 years of experience, offers unparalleled insights into financial markets. At 61, he has a track record of providing accurate, impactful analyses, making him a trusted voice in financial journalism.
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