This week, the conflict between Epic Games and Apple has reached a new level, with the company known for Fortnite and the Unreal Engine reporting that its App Store developer account has been blocked again. The move comes shortly after Epic triumphantly announced plans to launch the Epic Games Store and Fortnite on iOS devices in the European Union. Despite the legal disputes between Epic and Apple, this was made possible by the Digital Markets Act (DMA), which obliged large tech companies to bring their EU businesses into compliance with new requirements starting March 6, 2024.

Epic Games planned to use the DMA to launch a third-party game store on Apple’s iOS platform. The DMA obliges large technology platforms to allow and technically support the installation and effective use of third-party applications, which aims to promote competition and innovation. However, due to Apple’s actions to block the Epic Games developer’s account, these plans remained vague.

This situation raised significant concerns about Apple’s commitment to comply with the DMA, led to active media discussion and an immediate response from the European Commission. However, Apple’s resistance did not last long, and the company changed its mind about blocking the Epic Games account. Epic CEO Tim Sweeney said that Apple would restore access.

“The DMA went through its first major challenge with Apple banning Epic Games Sweden from competing with the App Store, and the DMA just had its first major victory. Following a swift inquiry by the European Commission, Apple notified the Commission and Epic that it would relent and restore our access to bring back Fortnite and launch Epic Games Store in Europe under the DMA law.

A big win for European rule of law, for the European Commision, and for the freedom of developers worldwide to speak up,” wrote in a post on the social network X Sweeney.

This was confirmed by Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Trade and Services.

“I take note with satisfaction that following our contacts Apple decided to backtrack its decision on Epic exclusion.

From Day 2, DMA is already showing very concrete results! – Breton wrote on his X account.

Neither party has disclosed the details of these consultations, but at the request of the media, Apple responded that Epic Games has committed to comply with the company’s DMA rules.

“After speaking with Epic, they committed to complying with the rules, including our DMA policy. As a result, Epic Sweden AB has been allowed to re-sign the developer agreement and has been accepted into the Apple Developer Program,” Apple said in a statement.

Judging by the timing of the events and the quick reaction of the European Commission, Apple decided not to reduce the conflict with Epic Games over the DMA to another investigation by European officials.