April 22, 2021 at 04:03AM

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney will attend a weeks-long antitrust trial against Apple, Reuters reported. Apple’s Phil Schiller, who leads the App Store, will also be present at the trial.

The case stems from an incident between the two companies last year in which Epic implemented its own in-app payment system as a way to get around the 30 percent fee charged by Apple in the App Store.

In retaliation, Apple removed Epic’s products, including the mega-popular Fortnite game. In response, Epic filed an antitrust lawsuit saying Apple had been abusing its position as a leader in the field for mobile apps.

The trial will not allow cameras, but an audio-only feed will be available for the public, Reuters reported. The public will also have access to the exhibits filed during the trial. One member of the media will be allowed to monitor the trial from the courtroom.

Earlier this month, both Epic Games and Apple outlined their arguments for the trial, with Apple saying it planned to contend, as it has been all along, that its 30 percent commission for the App Store isn’t much different from the fees charged by other such stores like Google Play and shops for video game hardware. Apple is also expected to argue that its fees have fallen over time.

Meanwhile, Epic plans to argue that, by operating the App Store, Apple runs the sole avenue to install software on an iPhone. It will also argue that Apple uses its Apple Review workflow to achieve anti-competitive ends, along with other claims.

News also came out in March that Epic Games is suing Google in Australia for alleged anti-competitive behavior as well, which goes against that country’s rules.

Sweeney, in a blog post, wrote that Google “gives the illusion of being open by making arguments about the presence of alternative app stores on its platform or allowing direct downloading of apps from third-party providers, but in reality, these situations are so rare that they barely make a dent in the monopoly of the Android OS.”

No Cameras, But Epic CEO, Apple App Store Chief Will Attend Antitrust Trial …

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