Epic v Apple: Fortnite at ‘full penetration’ on console, more industry profit details, and text descriptions of trailers

    
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It’s the stupid gift that keeps on stupid giving. It’s the lawsuit that might have industry-wide shockwaves. It’s a trial that has seen whether a banana not wearing clothes is inappropriate was discussed in a court of law. It’s the Epic vs. Apple trial, and once more there are a variety of news pieces to be plucked from the affair.

  • The trial saw some interesting testimony entered into the record, starting off with Epic Games’ marketing director Matthew Weissinger claiming that Fortnite has “basically full penetration on console and mobile offers the biggest growth opportunity.” According to his testimony, the game saw 2.86 billion hours played when it was on iOS, and the cutoff from that mobile market has been harmful to the company.
  • In other testimony news, both sides have been using experts and academics to argue their points. One of those experts brought on by Apple was University of Pennsylvania Wharton economist Professor Lorin Hitt, who testified that buying microtransactions for various games outside of the App Store was “frictionless.” What’s of note here is that cross-examination appeared to see Hitt’s argument crumble, as Epic’s counsel tried to purchase items for Candy Crush Saga and Clash Royale and was met with some resistance.
  • There was an attempt by Apple to have an investigation launched into the credibility of testimony provided by Xbox VP for gaming Lori Wright. According to Apple, documents to support Wright’s claims that Microsoft doesn’t make money from console sales but instead earns money from digital sales like Game Pass were not provided, but Epic attempted to circumvent that assertion by providing exhibits to back up Wright’s claims in a counter-filing. Microsoft is due to file a response this Monday, May 17th, while Apple will have until May 24th to file a reply, after which the court will decide whether to grant Apple’s investigation request.
  • Once again the trial has offered some industry insight that probably isn’t intended for public consumption overall. Specifically, a claim that third-party devs have made $500 million from Epic Game Store to date, word that Epic apparently has 14 projects in development, and some redacted Microsoft documents that stated publishers capture the majority of industry profit at 66% — platforms in closed ecosystems like console or mobile generate 39 – 46% of segment profits, while open ecosystems like PC generate only 5%.
  • Finally, in the goofy section of trial news, there’s apparently been some courtroom document descriptions of Fortnite trailers. Because anything can be entered into courtroom documents, apparently.
sources: GamesIndustry.biz (1, 2, 3), Gamasutra, Kotaku
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