We have been reporting in detail about the legal dispute between Apple and Epic Games over the past few weeks and months. Epic Games largely failed in its attempt to force Apple to allow third-party app stores on iOS. Responsible Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers decided, however, that Apple should no longer prevent developers from redirecting users to third-party payment systems. as CNBC Apple is now reportedly appealing the ruling, which could delay such a change for years.
Apple filed an appeal in an Epic Games case Friday asking the company to suspend the injunction allowing developers to redirect to other in-app payment systems in addition to Apple’s. If Apple successfully enforces it, the policy change may not take effect until the process is complete — which, according to CNBC, could take years.
Apple announced last month that developers will have the option to redirect users to sign up for services outside the App Store. However, this change only applies to apps that offer subscription content for digital magazines, newspapers, books, audio, music, and video. However, Judge Rogers’ order states that this change must apply to all applications.
According to Apple, changes to the App Store rules could “disrupt the delicate balance between developers and customers that the App Store serves,” causing irreparable harm to Apple and consumers. Apple says the suspension will allow the company to protect its platform as it operates with “the complex and rapidly evolving legal, technological and economic issues that any revision of this Policy may raise.”
As an additional reason for the appeal, Apple stated that Epic Games barely mentioned the anti-redirection lawsuit, i.e. the ban on redirection, during the process and provided no evidence that Epic Games was harmed by this app store rule.
The appeal will go to court in November, while the restraining order ordering Apple to lift restrictions on developers should go into effect on December 9, 2021.