Epic Games announced today that it will not distribute its massively popular game Fortnite on Android through Google’s Play Store marketplace. Instead, the company plans to directly distribute the software to players through the official Fortnite website, where Android users can download a Fortnite Installer program to install the game on compatible devices. The news confirms reports from earlier this week that Epic would bypass Google for the Android launch of the game.
Till now, if you wanted to Fortnite on a mobile device, it is available only for the Apple iPhone. After a significant wait, the game will finally be arriving on Android devices as well. But not exactly how you may have imagined. Epic Games has confirmed that it’ll bypass the Google Play Store to serve you the game. Epic CEO Tim Sweeny said in a tweet posted over the weekend, “Everyone active in the Android ecosystem, including Google, manufacturers, carriers, and now Epic Games, will need to work together to maximize the security of Android as an open platform. We recognize we’re taking on a big responsibility here and take it seriously.”
For all the trumpeting of being an open platform, Google also takes a 30 percent cut from all in-app purchases made via the Play Store on Google devices. This isn’t entirely dissimilar from what Apple does. In-app purchases are now very common in otherwise free to download apps, and remain a solid source of revenue for developers. The motivation clearly is to not share the cut with Google.
The reality is, Epic Games cannot and will not be held responsible if you happen to download a fake Fortnite app on your Android phone, just because the app icon and the website seemed real. And that is how scams begin.
What are your thoughts? Do you think it’s better for games to be published directly rather than on Google Play? Let us know down in the comments below!