Epic's Fortnite end run around the Play Store could cost Google more than $50 million this year

As we've seen over the years, the right video game offered to smartphone users can bring in hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. Epic Games, the developer of sizzling hot Fortnite, has made the game available for those using a mobile device powered by iOS. And even though a beta version of the game will be made available exclusively to those toting certain high-end Samsung Galaxy models, Fortnite will not be offered to Android users through the Google Play Store. Apparently, Epic does not want to give Google 30% of the huge amount of revenues that would be generated from a listing in the Play Store (which doesn't make sense considering that is the same percentage that Apple is taking from the iOS app).

Eventually, when the game is officially offered to Android users, they will have to sideload Fortnite through Epic's website. The company feels that the game is so popular that eventually Android users with compatible handsets will flock to its website to install Fortnite, even without a Play Store listing. App research firm Sensor Tower says that from now through the end of the year, Epic's end run around the Play Store will cost Google $50 million or more in lost platform fees.

Sensor Tower also says that Epic has grossed $180 million from iOS users since it first became available on March 15th via invitation to iPhone and iPad users. Now, the game is available from the App Store. Apple's share of the take has amounted to $54 million thus far.

With Epic's decision not to launch the game in the Google Play Store, Google is reminding those who search for the game there, that it can not be downloaded in the usual manner (see the screenshot at right). This is being done to prevent Android users from getting scammed by knockoff and copycat apps.

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30 Comments

1. cmdacos

Posts: 4334; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

"Epic's Fortnite end run around the Play Store could cost Google more than $50 million this year" Anyone translate this title for me?

6. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Roughly translated to english (doing my best, not a native iPA speaker): "iPA authors need to take some classes in english to better understand english grammar and spelling. Maybe hire some authors from the North American market."

10. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Google is not losing a thing if it's not on their play store to begin with. Now with that said people should look at Apple. That has FORCED their 30% cut on anyone and everyone that trys to monetize their app on Apple's app store. Google doesn't FORCE any app monetization on their Play store to go through them. But alas PhoneArena paints Google with a loss instead. But praises Apples greed. Yeah, whatever.

14. Phullofphil

Posts: 1832; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

They should pay the 30 % it’s wrong. Scamming the system. The greedy one is fortnite. I don’t agree with this.

19. worldpeace

Posts: 3135; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

It's not scamming, it's totally legal and Google itself allow that.. They also nice enough to put that notice in search result/

29. BlackhawkFlys

Posts: 930; Member since: May 07, 2014

No, they shouldn't. And 30% is a huge cut no matter if it's Apple charging it or Google.

23. MarvzIsFallen

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

It is the right of  to charge whoever apps it is. It is their god damn store. You think it is easy to build an app store? If yes, then why not build every OEM with their own store then. Also, it is good that  charging them cause they’re making their apps the best compared to androids, cause developers were charging consumers too since iphone owners can afford to buy and subscribe to the apps they wanted to. Unlike android, they wanted free as always. No wonder why they are crying out loud for 1000 bucks phone.

27. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Narrow minded. Yet another who claims all android users are poor...so petty and smug lol.

26. ChicagoBorn

Posts: 102; Member since: Jan 24, 2018

Bringing up apple smh

15. Phullofphil

Posts: 1832; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

If you don’t understand something look it up. Makes you look stupid. Just so you can make fun of author.

8. Alan01

Posts: 646; Member since: Mar 21, 2012

I'm guessing that you're not a sports fan. An end run is a football term. Basically, the headline says what is in the story: Epic (Fortnite's developer) is avoiding the Play Store and having Android users sideload the game onto their Android devices via a link on its website. Any further questions, let me know. Regards, Alan

12. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Alan if you actually looked at Google monetization practices. Then you would know that Google doesn't FORCE any app monetization to go through them. Developers could always bypass Google. As a matter of fact their is apps right now on Google's play store that use their own monetization, and not giving Google a thing. Where as Apple is the company that FORCES any app monetization to go through them. So why are you not informing people about that stuff? Instead you paint Google in a negative light. But praise Apples FORCED monetization and profit of $54 million instead. So yeah, I am letting you know Alan01.

18. Alan01

Posts: 646; Member since: Mar 21, 2012

Of course Google doesn't force developers to use the Play Store, and no one is painting Google in a negative light. The point is that Epic doesn't want to pay Google its 30% share for sales made through the Play Store, which means that Google loses out on the opportunity to gross $50 million. I have no ax to grind EVER. My personal phones are always Android and I just bought a Pixel 2 XL to be my daily driver. Regards, Alan

13. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

We're geeks and nerds Allan. Sports? Football?? What is that???

25. _PHug_

Posts: 482; Member since: Oct 11, 2011

Speak for yourself nerd

28. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

I'm aware of women's beach volleyball - that's it that's all lol.

16. Phullofphil

Posts: 1832; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Most people should be able to figure it out they are just did not agree with you so they got personal

22. DnB925Art

Posts: 1168; Member since: May 23, 2013

American here: An end run around is a (American) football term for a play where the player carrying the football goes around the end of the the line to advance the ball forward. Basically avoiding the defense by going wide. In regards to the statement made, Epic is going around Google by offering Fortnite directly to Android users and avoiding Google's Play Store.

2. GoTstan

Posts: 386; Member since: Jul 25, 2015

Good for epic. Apple and android are different. Epic has to optimize the game for so many different android phones, for Apple it's just the iphone. Way more work. So comparing the 2 isn't cut and dry

3. AbhiD

Posts: 857; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

This might actually turn out to be Fortnite's loss. 1. Not being available on Playstore - 50-60% lesser installs. Majority crowd isn't tech savvy and primarily depends on Playstore. 2. Only available on select Samsung devices for intial few months - Good luck excluding majority user base when the hype around the game is high. By the time it's available on other devices, a big chunk would have forgotten if this thing even existed. Several months are too long in Smartphone market. And even when it will be available on other devices, there are very less compatible devices to even find a big user base. 3. Like it or not, fortnite loving crowd is more on iPhone, reason is kids n teenagers who love childish gameplay and graphics. It might even not end up being popular on Android at all. 4. Popularity of battle royale games is on the decline. The have long hit the peak, now it's the time for downfall. Fortnite took too long to bring it. PUBG Mobile instead took advantage of the hype and has early mover's advantage. Only advice to Epic Games - Whoever is handling Fortnite for Android, sack that person. He/She set it up for a failure.

5. cmdacos

Posts: 4334; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

It's exclusive to Samsung for 2 more days, not weeks or months...

4. Godlymansean

Posts: 339; Member since: Apr 14, 2017

I mean it's either gonna show everyone just how popular this game is, or they made a bad move. I think it's smart. Time will tell...

17. Phullofphil

Posts: 1832; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

I hope it don’t work they are scamming the system but depend on it

7. Cyberchum

Posts: 1116; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

It may seem smart now, but I don't think it'd be. . Like "3" rightly said, many users depend on the ease of play store for installs. Not many are knowledgeable enough to grab apps from websites. . And I, personally, don't understand how games like this one attract so much interest.

21. buccob

Posts: 2980; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

I agree, and not only that, but Play Store is much more than just the app market it used to be... Besides filtering bad apps, it also allows for easy update management, as well as being a review guide for everyone looking to install new apps. I used to sideload apps occasionally, but right now it feels unnecessary and unsafe

9. blastertoad

Posts: 50; Member since: Jul 17, 2018

The biggest advantage of Android is options. They had to release it through App store on IOS, no other option. However on Android they may release it via web download, or galaxy app store on Samsung ( they have ), Amazon app market, or one of many other marketplaces available with easy install on Android.

11. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Android caters to a much larger audience...and most likely more of an adult audience - hard to say how much interest would be generated - I'm only speculating though (I for one am not interested as I don't play very many games on my phone if any (yet to do so on my LG V30) - prefer console gaming, even then I don't do much of that either). If this game were/is highly sought out amongst the android crowd I could see Epic's mindset....that would be a tremendous amount of downloads, and giving up 30% a pop would translate to mega $$$ in lost revenue. Once the game makes enough headlines I wouldn't be surprised if Epic pulls the game from apples app store - wait...can iOS users sideload apps/games from Epic's website or anywhere aside from their app store without jailbreaking???

20. worldpeace

Posts: 3135; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

This idea my looks good for now.. But just wait till the inevitable happen... 1. They'll lost lots of potential player because there are many people that don't know (or don't want to know) how to side load an app And shortly after that... 2. Many people will get fooled and download some random malware that they think is fortnite, they get that apk from someone on facebook, IG, twitter, youtube, and many other stuff.. And Google and Epic can't do much about that. (and maybe) Finally Epic will give up and put it on playstore, it's possible to do IAP outside of playstore's payment system even though that app is downloaded from playstore and Google also allow that (like how you pay subscription for spotify using paypal)

24. epdm2be

Posts: 827; Member since: Apr 20, 2012

"...cost Google $50 million or more in lost platform fees." Not if idiotic sites like PA stop shoving this game down our throats! Djeez. Why is everyone so pushy about this game?

30. WingMan

Posts: 263; Member since: Mar 28, 2008

"which doesn't make sense considering that is the same percentage that Apple is taking from the iOS app" It makes perfect sense. If they could sideload on non jailbroken iOS devices, they would have. They just don't have that option with apple.

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