When Fortnite was first announced for Android devices, Epic Games decided to not put it on the Google Play Store. Now, after a year and a half, the company decided to release the game on the official Android app market. Though this was done very unwillingly, if the statement from the publisher is of any indication.
Here’s the statement from Epic Games, reproduced in full:
After 18 months of operating Fortnite on Android outside of the Google Play Store, we’ve come to a basic realization:
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, Google public relations characterizing third party software sources as malware, and new efforts such as Google Play Protect to outright block software obtained outside the Google Play store.
Because of this, we’ve launched Fortnite for Android on the Google Play Store. We’ll continue to operate the Epic Games App and Fortnite outside of Google Play, too.
We hope that Google will revise its policies and business dealings in the near future, so that all developers are free to reach and engage in commerce with customers on Android and in the Play Store through open services, including payment services, that can compete on a level playing field
Epic Games is known to be quite vocally against the 30% cut that the Google Play Store takes. Its own PC games store was famously announced to only be taking a 12% cut from every sale. The publisher has avoided paying Google the 30% cut so far by making the game available on its own website instead. But it looks like the company has decided it’s no longer worth trying to avoid paying the sales fee.
It’s also a fight that the publisher didn’t bother fighting with Apple over the availability of Fortnite on iOS.
For what’s worth, it’s now easier for those who play the game on Android devices to get the game updated. For those thinking of picking the game up, it’s also easier to just get the game from the Google Play Store, linked below.