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Epic Games vs Apple set to restart in Australia with Google in tow

Still from Epic Games 'Free Fortnite' video

The paused courtroom fight between Apple and Epic Games in Australia is set to resume, but with a similar lawsuit against Google being incorporated into the same trial.

As part of its global legal battle against Apple over the popular game "Fortnite," Epic Games attempted to bring the battle to Australian courts in 2020. However, in April 2021, a judge ordered a stay on the case until the U.S. version of the dispute reached a conclusion.

With the American litigation all but concluded entirely, the courtroom action in Australia is preparing to start again. This time, Apple won't be the only one having to fend off Epic Games, as Google will also be in the same courtroom.

Just like in the United States, Epic had parallel cases against Apple and Google in Australia, with similar accusations of monopolistic behavior and disputes over in-app purchases.

Justice Jonathan Beach decided that it would be best to hear the two cases at the same time, as well as a class-action suit run on behalf of developers and consumers, reports The Guardian. The judge made the decision to avoid the duplication of witness evidence, which will include many high-profile people from all three companies.

Five months, and beyond

The courtroom activity is expected to last for up to five months. The opening submissions will take two weeks which will then be followed by three months of evidence from experts and witnesses.

Much like the U.S. trial, the witnesses are expected to include major names at Apple and Google, with a number apparently already in Melbourne preparing for the hearing. Epic CEO Tim Sweeney is also allegedly in attendance.

After the three-month evidence period, closing submissions will last another two weeks, with the courtroom action ending in mid-July. However, the judgment from Justice Beach isn't expected to arrive within six months of the conclusion.

With the prospect of a lengthy appeals process, the lawsuits may not fully finish until 2025 or beyond.