What you need to know
- Apple has been denied a request to delay an injunction against it in the Epic Games trial.
- It will have to comply with new rules by December 9.
- It will mean App Store developers can include links and other calls to action, sending users to external locations to make payments.
A judge has denied Apple's motion to delay an injunction passed down against the company in the Epic Games trial.
In a ruling following a court hearing Tuesday, Judge Gonzalez Rogers stated that Apple had failed to satisfy the court on the merits of the motion, and had ignored much of the court's findings regarding why it was passed in the first place:
In short, Apple's motion is based on a selective reading of this Court's findings and ignores all of the findings which supported the injunction, namely incipient antitrust conduct including supercompetitive commission rates resulting in extraordinarily high operating margins and which have not been correlated to the value of its intellectual property.
The court said it could envision "numerous avenues for Apple to comply with the injunction and yet take steps to protect users." The judge also clarified that the previous ruling does not make any provision for alternative in-app purchasing methods, like the Epic Games direct payment hotfix that started the whole drama to begin with:
With respect to the alleged need for clarification because, anecdotally, some developers may not understand the scope of the injunction, the parties themselves have not indicated any confusion. The Developer Agreement prohibits third-party in-app purchasing systems other than Apple's IAP. The Court did not enjoin that provision but rather enjoined the prohibition to communicate external alternatives and to allow links to those external sites. Apple still maintains the convenience of IAP and, if it can compete on pricing, developers may opt to capitalize on that convenience, including any reassure that Apple provides to consumers that it may provide a safer or better choice. The fact remains: it should be their choice. Consumer information, transparency, and consumer choice is in the interest of the public.
Apple says that it plans to appeal to the Ninth Circuit regarding the specific matter of a stay, it has already appealed the overall ruling of the case to the same court. A spokesperson told The Verge "Apple believes no additional business changes should be required to take effect until all appeals, in this case, are resolved. We intend to ask the Ninth Circuit for a stay based on these circumstances."
Without a stay, the changes will take place on December 9.