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Google not at fault for clones and unsanctioned apps on Google Play, says Epic CEO

Google not at fault for clones and unsanctioned apps on Google Play, says Epic CEO

August 6, 2018 | By Alissa McAloon

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney spoke with Polygon about the company’s unusual decision to bypass Android’s primary app store, Google Play, for Fortnite’s upcoming Android release.

Particularly, he addressed concerns that unofficial Fortnite apps already present on the Google Play Store may have influenced Epic to seek alterer distribution methods. For Fortnite, those unofficial apps range from apps offering item and strategy guides to fakes and battle royale games using Fortnite assets.

Sweeney said the prominence of these kinds of apps on Google Play was not factored into the decision to release the game as a standalone installer rather than hosting it on Google Play. 

Beyond that, Sweeney also notes that he doesn’t believe devs should hold companies like Google or Apple at fault for cloned games that do show up on mobile platforms.

“I don’t think we should fault Google or Apple for the appearance of clones,” Sweeney told Polygon. “They operate stores that accept hundreds of thousands of products from the developer community, so it would be impossible to keep track of original authorship, and there’s a reasonable DMCA notice process for developers to inform them when copyright infringement does occur.”

Some of Sweeney’s answers mirror comments made in an interview with Eurogamer last week, but the conversation with Polygon does cover new ground like the comments mentioned above and more on Epic’s own safeguards to keep kids from piling Fortnite charges on a parent’s credit card.

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