Epic Games may have largely lost its major lawsuit against Apple, but it’s not going without a fight – and it has major support in its corner. Shortly after the Epic Games vs. Apple decision was made, Epic appealed, and over the past two days a slew of organizations have filed amicus briefs in support of Epic’s battle, including a coalition of 35 state attorneys general, Microsoft and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). (The original decision has since been suspended after an appeals court granted a stay.)
During the fight, Epic was trying to argue that Apple had a monopoly on mobile gaming with the App Store, and in doing so, forced Apple to take a smaller percentage of all transactions that go through that store. If he succeeds in pushing Apple to accept other payment processors, it could radically change the way Apple, the most profitable company in the world, manages its very lucrative App Store. In the original case, the judge ultimately ruled in favor of Apple in nine of the ten counts Epic brought against it, but Epic and Apple appealed the parts they lost.
In an opening appeal brief filed last week, Epic argued that upholding the ruling would “upset established principles of antitrust law and…undermine sound antitrust policy.”
Now it seems that more than half of the US states, Microsoft and the many other groups filing amicus briefs (which are filed by someone who is not a party to the case, adding additional information that may be relevant) are siding with Epic, the company that lost all but one count in the original ruling, because they believe Apple may have a monopoly as well.
“Apple’s behavior has harmed and harms mobile app developers and millions of citizens,” the states said in their brief. “Meanwhile, Apple continues to monopolize app distribution and payment solutions built into iPhones, stifle competition, and rack up supercompetitive profits within the smartphone industry, which accounts for nearly a trillion dollars a year Apple must account for its conduct under a full rule of reason analysis.
“A broad decision for Apple could leave little room for a limiting principle to prevent Apple from leveraging its control over iOS to prohibit competition in countless adjacent markets,” Microsoft said. “Google, the only other mobile operating system vendor, could be empowered to do the same. The stakes are high for Microsoft and other companies that rely on antitrust laws to protect competition on the merits. (It should be noted note that Microsoft was a key ally of Epic during the trial, as Epic even called Microsoft to the stand to testify.)
“A holistic review of the District Court’s factual findings will show that Apple has market power in app distribution and that its advanced justifications for its restrictive App Store policies do not outweigh the anti-competitive effects of these policies,” the EFF said in the conclusion. in his memory. “As a result, this Court should find that Apple’s policies are illegal under the Sherman Act. This result will leave Apple free to continue innovating for the benefit of its users, while allowing innovation to flourish outside of Apple’s walls as well.
Here is the list of organizations that have filed amicus briefs. We’ve uploaded each of their memoirs to DocumentCloud so you can read them for yourself:
The United States also filed an amicus brief, although it does not support either side.