Xbox makes ‘Fortnite’ free to play on iPhone


The Xbox Cloud Gaming service makes the popular battle royale video game “Fortnite” free to play on a range of devices powered by Apple, Android or Windows software.

Microsoft’s video game unit, Xbox, announced Thursday that it will leverage cloud computing to make “Fortnite” free to play on mobile devices powered by Apple or Android software.

Epic Games’ popular battle royale title will be the first free-to-play game available through an Xbox Cloud Gaming service available in 26 countries, product manager Catherine Gluckstein said in a blog post.

Fortnite’s return to iPhone and iPad comes after the game was booted from Apple’s App Store for attempting to bypass its payment system in violation of the iPhone maker’s rules.

Apple has taken Epic to court, which accused the iPhone maker of exploiting its App Store’s monopoly for digital goods and services.

A U.S. federal judge in November ordered Apple to loosen scrutiny of its App Store payment options, but said Epic had failed to prove antitrust violations had occurred.

“Fortnite” will be free on Xbox Cloud Gaming thanks to a partnership with Epic.

Fans of the game can play on Apple iOS devices, Android phones or tablets, as well as on Windows computers through web browsers, Gluckstein said.

Apple and Google dominate the market, with their operating systems running on the majority of smartphones around the world.

“This is just the beginning for us,” Gluckstein said.

“We will learn, implement feedback, and over time look to bring even more free titles to players through the cloud.”

Microsoft has courted the favor of antitrust regulators reviewing its plan to buy video game maker Activision Blizzard, promising that any app store it builds will treat developers fairly.

Microsoft’s $69 billion deal to buy the video game powerhouse must pass regulators in Europe and the United States who are intent on reining in the tech titans.

Microsoft’s stated principles included allowing all developers access to its app store and not requiring them to use the tech company’s payment system for in-app transactions.

Microsoft promises App Store fairness with Activision merger

© 2022 AFP

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