Epic Games, a U.S.-based gaming company, has filed a case against Google in an Indian tribunal, accusing the tech giant of not complying with a portion of an antitrust directive. The allegation claims that Google has not hosted Epic’s app store, Epic Games Store, on the Google Play Store app, as directed by the Competition Commission of India (CCI). Epic has also accused Google of not allowing third-party app stores on Play Store and restricting the practice of “sideloading,” which allows apps to be downloaded freely without using the Play Store.
Google has faced several legal challenges in India, and last month, it announced changes to its Android business model after losing a legal fight with the CCI. Epic’s recent filing is the latest legal issue for Google, and the case is likely to be heard in the coming days.
Epic Games is seeking an order to force Google to comply with the CCI’s ruling, and the company claims that it has been “adversely affected” by Google’s non-compliance. The gaming company has expressed its intention to launch the Games Store app on Google Play Store, and it is “exploring” the possibility.
Epic Games has been vocal against Apple and Google’s high app store commissions, and it has 9.5 million users in India. Bakari Middleton, Director of Global Public Policy at Epic Games, said that the company is “seeking to join Indian developers in court to support the CCI’s order that requires Google to allow competing third-party app stores.”
Google, on the other hand, has submitted its “compliance plan to the CCI” and is “respectfully following the legal process in India.” In October, the CCI accused Google of exploiting its dominant position in Android in India, where 97% of smartphones run on the operating system. Google has denied wrongdoing and sought to stall the directive, but India’s Supreme Court has ordered it to follow the CCI’s directives. The court has also allowed Google to continue arguing its case before the New Delhi appeals tribunal, where Epic has filed its case.