Apple’s Revenue From Epic’s Fortnite Topped $100 Million

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Apple Inc. generated at least $100 million in revenue -- and possibly much more -- from Fortnite’s 30-month run on the App Store, according to testimony from the iPhone maker about its income from the business at the heart of an antitrust trial with Epic Games Inc.

The revenue figure was disclosed when Michael Schmid, an Apple employee in charge of App Store business development for games, was questioned on the witness stand Wednesday in federal court in Oakland, California.

Schmid wouldn’t specify an exact dollar amount and declined to say if the revenue was more than $200 million, saying it would be “inappropriate” to share that information. Epic’s Fortnite launched on the App Store in 2018 and was present until Apple removed it last year.

The actual revenue may be far higher. Users spent almost $1.2 billion through Apple’s App Store on Fortnite, generating revenue of about $354 million for Apple, app market data firm Sensor Tower said last year. When Fortnite was on the App Store, Apple took 30% commissions from the blockbuster game for in-app-upgrades.

Schmid, who manages his company’s relationship with Epic, also reiterated prior statements that Apple spent $1 million on marketing for Fortnite during its last 11 months on the App Store. Epic’s lawyer, Lauren Moskowitz, characterized the the marketing-to-revenue ration as a “good deal.”

For Apple, $100 million in revenue over two and a half years is a drop in the bucket. The Cupertino, California-based company generated about $22 billion from App Store commission in 2020 alone, according to Sensor Tower estimates. In fiscal 2020, Apple made $275 billion in revenue across the entire company.

In its questioning of Schmid, Epic is trying to show the judge that Apple makes extraordinarily high profit from its App Store operation, one piece of the game maker’s case that iPhone maker acts like a monopoly.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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