The Verdict is In: Google Ordered to Consider Epic Games Store on Google Play

After Epic Games’ surprising victory in court, many were doubtful that Judge James Donato would entertain the idea of forcing Google to allow the Epic Games Store to exist within the Google Play Store. However, to everyone’s surprise, Judge Donato is indeed considering this very notion. He has instructed Google to determine the costs associated with implementing Epic’s demands by June 24th, 2024.

One of the primary demands put forth by Epic is the request for Google to grant the Epic Games Store access to every app available within the Google Play Store. This is a bold move on Epic’s part and could potentially change the landscape of app distribution on Google’s platform.

Google has been given a deadline to provide a detailed account of the technical work required and any potential economic costs involved in providing “Catalog Access” and “Library Porting” to competing app stores for up to six years. This directive also includes considerations for the distribution of third-party app stores through the Google Play Store.

During an evidentiary hearing, Judge Donato expressed skepticism towards Google’s arguments against Epic’s proposed remedies. However, he also pointed out that some of Epic’s demands were vague and open-ended. This indicates that while the judge is open to considering changes, he is also cautious about the potential implications of such alterations.

A final hearing is scheduled for August 14th, where Epic will have the opportunity to question Google’s experts and engineers regarding the feasibility and accuracy of their estimates. This will be a crucial moment in determining the future relationship between Epic Games and Google.

Should Epic succeed in its demands, it could set a precedent for other app developers and stores to challenge the current dominance of Google’s Play Store. The tech industry is watching this case closely as it could have far-reaching consequences for the app distribution market.

The decision by Judge Donato to consider Epic’s demands represents a significant shift in the dynamics between app developers and platform holders. The outcome of this case could potentially reshape the way apps are distributed and accessed on Android devices. As the deadline approaches and tensions rise, all eyes are on Google and Epic Games to see how this battle will unfold.

Tech

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