Day: August 13, 2020

Fortnite for Android just got axed from the Google Play Store too

After Epic Games picked a fight with Apple over the sizable chunk of fees the company takes on transactions in its mobile ecosystem, it looks like the Fortnite developer will be waging a war on two fronts.

Epic added a direct payment option to its mobile game early Thursday, prompting Apple to remove Fortnite from the App Store. Now, the Android version of Fortnite has gone missing from Google’s own app marketplace too.

In a statement, Google defended the decision to remove Fortnite for breaking its platform rules:

The open Android ecosystem lets developers distribute apps through multiple app stores. For game developers who choose to use the Play Store, we have consistent policies that are fair to developers and keep the store safe for users. While Fortnite remains available on Android, we can no longer make it available on Play because it violates our policies. However, we welcome the opportunity to continue our discussions with Epic and bring Fortnite back to Google Play.

While Epic’s legal filing and in-game spoof of Apple’s iconic 1984 commercial make for a flashy fight, it’s not Epic’s first tangle over the mobile version of Fortnite. The company actually decided to keep Fortnite out of the Google Play Store back in 2018 over complaints very similar to its current crusade against the 30% cut that Google and Apple take from sales in their app stores. Fortnite is free-to-play, but players buy seasonal passes that unlock its progression system as well an in-game cosmetic items like skins that make Epic a ton of money and don’t affect gameplay.

Update: Epic has apparently filed a parallel suit against Google, citing the company’s old “Don’t be evil” mantra and alleging that the company violated antitrust rules by “using its size to do evil upon competitors.”

When Epic gave in and brought Fortnite back to the Google Play Store this April, it did so with a statement condemning Google’s treatment of apps outside of its own app marketplace. While all apps in Apple’s iOS come from the App Store, Google actually does allow apps like Fortnite to be sideloaded outside of Google Play, but the experience is generally less smooth and accompanied with warnings about malware.

“Google puts software downloadable outside of Google Play at a disadvantage, through technical and business measures such as scary, repetitive security pop-ups for downloaded and updated software, restrictive manufacturer and carrier agreements and dealings… Because of this, we’ve launched Fortnite for Android on the Google Play Store,” an Epic Games spokesperson said in April.

Fortnite is still available on Android, just not through Google’s app store. On its website, Epic points players to a direct download via QR code and the game is also available through Samsung’s Galaxy Store on supported devices.

‘You’re stuck in 2016’: Stephen Colbert mocks Trump’s ‘lazy’ insults for Kamala Harris

'You're stuck in 2016': Stephen Colbert mocks Trump's 'lazy' insults for Kamala Harris

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden announced Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate this week, and President Donald Trump is predictably already on the attack. However, as Late Show host Stephen Colbert noted, Trump is still literally workshopping “effective nicknames” for Harris, simply calling her “nasty” in the meantime. 

“How lazy are you? You’re just repeating what you said about Hillary!” said Colbert on Wednesday night. “You’re stuck in 2016 and that’s not fair. Why should you be the only one who gets to live in a time when you’re not president?”

More about Donald Trump, Stephen Colbert, The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Kamala Harris, and 2020 Election

Tune in tomorrow and watch five startups compete at Pitchers & Pitches

Ever hear the expression, “every master was once a disaster?” Now apply that to developing a well-crafted pitch. It takes practice and honest feedback to make a masterful pitch, and that’s exactly what you’ll get when you participate in our next Pitchers & Pitches. It’s 50 percent competition, 50 percent masterclass and 100 percent free.

Join us tomorrow, August 13, at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT as five randomly chosen Digital Startup Alley exhibitors present their rapid-fire pitches to a panel of TC editors and expert VCs. (take a peek at this session’s competitors and judges below).

Get ready to take notes, ask questions — this is an interactive educational event — and apply what you learn to pump up your own 60-second pitch. Here’s another reason to pay close attention to the live pitches; the viewing audience decides which founder throws the best pitch. It’s a competition after all, with a prize and everything.

And it’s a pretty awesome prize if we do say so ourselves. The winner walks away with a consulting session with cela, a company that connects early-stage startups to accelerators and incubators that can help scale their businesses.

Anyone can attend Pitchers & Pitches — and learn valuable tips in the process — but only companies exhibiting in Digital Startup Alley at Disrupt 2020 can compete. If you’d like a shot at competing in our next Pitchers & Pitches event on September 2, purchase a Disrupt Digital Startup Alley Package. You’ll be ready to exhibit and pitch your startup genius to thousands of disrupt attendees from around the world.

Attending Pitchers & Pitches also gives you time to check out the new virtual Disrupt platform before it goes live in September, meet and video network with other P&P attendees and connect with the five pitching founders in their virtual booth in the startup expo.

It’s time to name names — judges are standing by to give their best feedback for this session. The panel consists of two TechCrunch editors — Zack Whittaker and Natasha Mascarhenas and two leading VCs — Sydney Thomas and Curtis Rodgers. When it comes to pitches, this group’s heard ‘em all — the good, the bad and the ugly. Follow their advice and you might just make it into the first category.

And here are the five startups ready to wring every advantage out of tomorrow’s competition.

Myneral Labs

Centrly

Primeclass

CarpeMed

Cirtru

Register here for the next Pitchers & Pitches — tomorrow, August 13 at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT. Learn to master your pitch and get ready to make the most of all the opportunities you’ll find at Disrupt 2020.

Is your company interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at Disrupt 2020? Contact our sponsorship sales team by filling out this form.