Alphabet Inc’s Google has struck at least 24 deals with big app developers to prevent them from competing with its Play Store, including a $360 million agreement with Activision Blizzard Inc.
In 2020, Google agreed to help Riot Games by paying them anywhere from $15 to $30 million.
The financial details emerged in a newly unredacted copy of the first lawsuit filed by “Fortnite” video game maker Epic Games, against Google, starting in 2020. It accused the search giant of monopolistic practices, including anticompetitive behavior related to Android and Play Store businesses, which would limit consumers’ choice.
In response to the lawsuit, Google said its deals with developers reflect healthy competition and a lack of merit. According to them, the lawsuit is baseless and full of mischaracterizations.
Riot said it was reviewing the filing from Activision. If you’d like to share your comments on this topic, we’d love to hear them.
Despite losing a similar case to Apple Corp last year, Epic Games still provides valuable services. An appeals ruling coming next year should help Epic overturn the previous ruling granted by the trial’s appellate court.
Google’s agreements with developers are part of an internal effort known as “Project Hug” and were described in earlier versions of the lawsuit without the exact terms.
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