Apple has been asking a bunch of companies to give it confidential information in its ongoing legal battle with Epic Games over how much money each company gets to collect off of Fortnite skin sales on the iPhone. Yesterday, a California magistrate judge ordered Valve to comply with one of these requests and hand over financial data on hundreds of games sold through Steam over the last few years.
Apple’s original request was very broad, but the judge narrowed it down to data on 436 specific games sold through Steam starting back in 2017, rather than all 30,000 games sold over the last six years, Law360 reports. Valve had been fighting the demands, calling them onerous for a company the size of Valve (it employs several hundred people, compared to Apple’s roughly 147,000), and saying the information is irrelevant to Apple’s battle with Epic.
“It’s my understanding, for lack of a better word, Apple has salted the earth with subpoenas, so don’t worry, it’s not just you,” Judge Hixson told Valve’s lawyers during a virtual hearing yesterday, according to Law360. Samsung has also been ordered to hand over sales data on its Galaxy app store as part of the ongoing dispute.
Valve has until mid-March to comply with the order and hand over the data. Meanwhile, Epic and Apple are set to head to court for a pretrial conference in April, followed by the official start of the trial in May. Fortnite has been unavailable on iPhones through the App Store ever since Apple pulled it over Epic circumventing its payment system. Epic has tried to get the game put back until the legal matter is settled, but has been shot down multiple times.