Judge presses Epic on the impact of its antitrust suit against Apple.

By Erin Griffith7 days ago

Last May, Epic Games was making plans to circumvent Apples and Googles app store rules and ultimately sue them in cases that could reshape the entire app economy and have profound ripple effects on antitrust investigations around the world.

Epics chief operating officer, Daniel Vogel, sent other executives an email raising a concern: Epic must persuade Apple and Google to give in to its demands for looser rules, he wrote, without us looking like the baddies.

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Apple and Google, Mr. Vogel warned, will treat this as an existential threat. To prepare, Epic formed a public relations and marketing plan to get the public behind its campaign against the tech giants.

Apple seized on that plan in a federal courtroom in Oakland, Calif., on Tuesday, the second day of what is expected to be a three-week trial stemming from Epics claims that Apple relies on its control of its App Store to unfairly squeeze money out of other companies.

Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers of Californias Northern District, who will decide the case, also asked Epics chief executive, Tim Sweeney, a series of pointed questions about its potential consequences. She asked whether he had any understanding of the economics of other types of apps, including food, maps, GPS, weather, dating or instant messaging.

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