Fortnite developer Epic Games will not be distributing its massively popular game on Android because the Play Store takes a 30 percent cut of the revenue. Instead, the company plans to distribute the software to players via the official Fornite website, “where Android users can download a Fortnite Installer program to install the game on compatible devices,” reports The Verge. From the report: For Fortnite on iOS, Epic decided to distribute the game on the App Store, most likely because it had no other method of getting iPhone users to easily download the software. (Apple, unlike Google, does not allow iOS users to download apps that are not first approved by its internal review processes and distributed through its proprietary marketplace.) With Google and its more open platform, Epic can get away with distributing the app itself. CEO Tim Sweeney says the primary motivation here is twofold. Epic wants to maintain its direct relationship with consumers. (The company currently distributes Fortnite on PC through its own Epic Games Launcher, instead of using Valve’s popular Steam platform.)
The second reason is financial: Epic does not want to pay Google’s 30 percent cut, especially considering the entire game is funded through in-app purchases. “The 30 percent store tax is a high cost in a world where game developers’ 70 percent must cover all the cost of developing, operating, and supporting their games,” Sweeney says. “There’s a rationale for this on console where there’s enormous investment in hardware, often sold below cost, and marketing campaigns in broad partnership with publishers.” But on mobile platforms that are open, like Android, “30 percent is disproportionate to the cost of the services these stores perform, such as payment processing, download bandwidth, and customer service,” he says. Sweeney adds that Epic is “intimately familiar with these costs” from its direct distribution of Fortnite on Mac and PC. There’s no word as to when the Android version of Fortnite will be available, but rumors suggest it will be tied to the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 9 launch on August 9th.
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