The Epic Games Store will be coming to Android this year and what’s more is, it will come with its own aps. Fortnite creator Epic Games’ stab at alternative storefronts for gaming isn’t restricted to taking on Valve Corporation’s Steam with the Epic Games Store on PC. It wants to bring its selection of curated games to Google and Apple’s ecosystems as well. While it’s quite likely to be available as a sideload for Android devices much like Fortnite is, how Epic Games plans to make the Epic Games Store available on iOS however, will be a point of interest considering how Apple regulates its ecosystem, to the point where stalwarts like Valve haven’t been granted approval for its Steam Link app.
“The Epic Games store is launching on PC and Mac in 2018, and Android later in 2019,” Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney said in conversation with Game Informer. “We’d like to launch on iOS in 2019, however, that is in apparent conflict with current Apple policy. We believe all general purpose computing devices, such as PCs, smartphones, and tablets, should be open to competition between stores.”
He goes onto explain that the Epic Games Store won’t come to consoles like the PS4 and Xbox One.
“Consoles are a different market, with dedicated game machines whose hardware costs are often partly subsidised by software revenue,” he said. “Epic doesn’t seek to operate a storefront on console platforms, but as an engine maker we do everything we can to enable cross-platform interoperability.”
Furthermore, a recent report from the Wall Street Journal reiterates that Epic will sell Android games in 2019, charging the same 12 percent fee it does on PC. In the same Wall Street Journal report, Macquarie Capital analyst Ben Schachter suggests that the Epic Game Store on Android could make Google change its revenue split, prompting Apple to do so as well.
Previously, Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney confirmed that the Epic Games Store does not share user data with Tencent or other companies. The suspicions regarding sharing of user data emerged after Redditors dug into the terms of service of recently launched Epic Games Store which suggested that simply creating an Epic Games Store account opened users up to an unprecedented level of surveillance. Aside from developing PUBG Mobile, Chinese company Tencent has a minority stake in Epic in addition to other companies like Activision and Riot Games. However, Sweeney stated that user data from the Epic Games Store does not find its way to other companies for purposes like advertising.
“Re: Epic Games Store: Epic does not share user data with Tencent or any other company,” a Reddit post from Sweeney reads. “We don’t share it, sell it, or broker access to it for advertising like so many other companies do. I’m the founder and controlling shareholder of Epic and would never allow this to happen.”
Sweeney then goes on to clarify why the Epic Games Store terms of service appear to be more invasive than they actually are.
“The language related to sharing data with the parent companies refers to Epic Games Inc,” the post continues. “It’s a US-based company. This language exists because when you buy an Epic game in certain territories (like Europe), the seller of record is our local (e.g. European) subsidiary company for tax purposes, but the data is ultimately stored by Epic Games Inc.”
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