Epic Games Store Coming to iOS This Year in the EU

Epic Games, in their 2023 year in review:

We’ve received our Apple Developer Account and will start developing the Epic Games Store on iOS soon thanks to the new Digital Markets Act. We plan to launch in 2024. Epic Games Sweden AB will operate the mobile Epic Games Store and Fortnite in Europe, with the Store team leading development.

Epic Games Sweden has 3 studios and 60+ employees.

Tim Sweeney, on Twitter/X:

I’ll be the first to acknowledge a good faith move by Apple amidst our cataclysmic antitrust battle, in granting Epic Games Sweden AB a developer account for operating Epic Games Store and Fortnite in Europe under the Digital Markets Act.

This is the first serious announcement of an iOS EU app marketplace I’ve seen, and a seeming refutation of the notion that “no one” would accept Apple’s proposed terms.

Make the iOS Epic Games Store a hit. Make Epic lots of money. Make Apple a reasonable €0.50 per game installed. Bring Fortnite back to iOS. If Fortnite only comes back to iOS for EU users, then that’s a clear win for the DMA.

Apple plays hardball, for sure. And Apple has a long institutional memory and knows how to hold a grudge. But Apple is not a spiteful company. Apple likes its corporate nose right where it is — on its face. They play hardball strategically — to their own advantage first, to their users’ advantage second. That’s something Apple’s most vehement critics just don’t get. Setting up Epic to be a winner under their DMA compliance also sets Apple up to be a winner.

Who better to get on their side than Epic? This isn’t exactly what we wanted but it’s better than before, and so thanks to the DMA and the European Commission, Fortnite is back on iPhone and iPhone users in the EU have a great new game store that isn’t available anywhere else in the world. That would make the EC beam with pride. The fact that Epic (and Sweeney personally) still aren’t entirely happily would just make the EC more certain they did a good job. If no one’s quite happy, it must be fair, goes the thinking of all lazy referees.

It would be quite the public relations coup for Apple to get Epic and Tim Sweeney on their side. And game stores in particular seem like a perfect fit for Apple’s marketplaces, because games primarily monetize by getting players to pay, not just be tracked to be shown ads. Strange times make for strange bedfellows.

Sunday, 18 February 2024