Epic and Apple will go to trial in May 2021

(Image credit: Epic Games)

The trial between Epic Games and Apple will begin on May 3, 2021, according to a court filing made on October 6, which also confirms that—as requested—the case will be adjudicated via a bench trial. There will be plenty of (relative) action ahead of the start of the trial, however, including a "case management conference"—basically a pre-trial hearing intended to help "streamline trial issues"—that will take place on October 19.

Interestingly, it hasn't yet been decided whether the trial will be held in person, virtually, or in "some combination thereof," as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. That will be determined closer to the actual trial date. A pretrial conference will be held on April 21, 2021.

It will be very interesting to see how this case ultimately works out. The Washington Post recently reported on a congressional investigation that found Apple, along with Amazon, Google, and Facebook, had engaged in "anti-competitive, monopoly-style tactics" on their way to becoming massive corporate behemoths, but in September judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, who's presiding over the Epic-Apple dispute, criticized Epic for its tactics leading up to the lawsuit, saying its release of a Fortnite update that enabled users to bypass Apple's payment system was "not honest." Whatever the outcome, it will likely have a significant impact on the future of digital storefronts.

Thanks, GamesIndustry.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.