NewsBytes Briefing: Apple-Epic row escalates, and more
In the updates since last night, the row between Apple and Epic Games has further escalated. After the Cupertino giant removed Epic's Fortnite for bypassing its in-app purchases system, the latter sued it, alleging antitrust violations. In response, Apple has threatened to terminate Epic's developer accounts and cut off its access to development tools required to build games for iOS and macOS. Here's more.
Epic Games filed for an injunction against Apple
Owing to the retaliation by Apple, Epic has filed for an injunction against the Tim Cook-led giant to prevent it from cracking down on its developer accounts and crushing its business. Fortnite is already gone from Apple's App Store, and if the company terminates developer accounts, Epic's other titles as well as the Unreal Engine, offered to third-party developers, would also be in jeopardy.
Here's what Apple said in response to the injunction request
"We very much want to keep the company," Apple told The Verge. "The problem Epic has created for itself is one that can easily be remedied if they submit an update of their app that reverts it to comply with the guidelines they agreed to."
Oracle in the race to buy TikTok
Meanwhile, as Trump's 90-day-window runs out, ByteDance appears to be engaging with possible takers for TikTok's US business. Microsoft and Twitter are already said to be in the race, and now, a third player has emerged - Oracle. The B2B giant is reportedly in talks with investors that have a stake in ByteDance to purchase the TikTok's operations in US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand.
Lightspeed raises $275 million to fund Indian start-ups
Separately, Lightspeed India Partners Advisors LLP, the venture firm that backed Indian unicorns BYJU's, OYO, and Udaan in their early days, has raised $275 million for its third fund geared towards the country. With this effort, the firm looks forward to backing more than two dozen early-stage start-ups in the world's second-largest internet market. This is Lightspeed's biggest fund for India.
Other important developments to note
Among other things, Microsoft has announced the plan to phase out legacy Edge for Windows 10 and Internet Explorer 11 for Microsoft 365 apps and services, including Teams, by August 17, 2021. Google, meanwhile, announced a Chrome feature to prevent typing in unsecured forms and Apple said its customers can buy an AppleCare+ extended warranty within a year of buying products from the company.
Finally, some COVID-19 updates
On Monday, India reported roughly 54,000 new coronavirus infections, taking the nationwide tally of cases to 27.01 lakh. The death toll neared 52,000 with over 800 more fatalities. As for the vaccine, the Indian government has started discussions for a procurement deal with 5 Indian companies working on COVID-19 shots. Talks have also begun with Russia's Sputnik V maker, but nothing is finalized yet.