Tim Cook says Apple’s app ecosystem is an ‘economic miracle’ as legal battle with Epic Games picks up steam

The App Store is a lucrative business for Apple, and that’s one of the many reasons the company wants to keep things the way they are. Not that Apple isn’t changing some things, of course. But rules are rules, and Apple wants to keep those in place.

Which is why Apple is going head-to-head with Epic Games, the developer behind the mega-popular battle royale game Fortnite. But, before that trial starts up here soon, Apple’s Tim Cook recently spoke with developers in Canada during a virtual roundtable. Cook was speaking with four different developers, each of which have made “thriving businesses” using Apple’s App Store.

According to the original report from The Toronto Star, Canadian developers have made more than $2.25 billion (Canadian) through apps in the digital storefront. That’s since the App Store went live in 2008.

Cook apparently called Apple’s app ecosystem an “economic miracle”, adding that, globally, the App Store economic activity lifted up to $500 billion.

From the original report:

It’s one of the fastest-growing job segments,’ he said in an exclusive Canadian interview with the Toronto Star. ‘There are 243,000 developers who are making their living in Canada on the App Store. There’s more than that who are registered, but those are the ones where there’s a full-time job created.

Interestingly, Cook says that Epic Games’ argument, at least in part, is that the company wants an open field for payment options in the App Store. Epic doesn’t want other companies to have to rely on Apple’s system, which Apple essentially forces in most cases. However, Cook says that opening up the App Store like that would turn it into a “flea market”, and suggests that there’s not a lot of confidence in flea markets:

At the heart of the Epic complaint is they’d like developers to each put in their own payment information. But that would make the App Store a flea market and you know the confidence level you have at the flea market.

The volume of people going into such a market would be dramatically lower, which would be bad for the user, because they would miss out on the innovation like we just heard with the four developers. And the developers would be left out because they wouldn’t have a huge audience to sell to. So nobody wins in that environment.

I believe if we tell the story, the facts, if we can communicate those clearly, then I’m confident that we should prevail.

Cook says that as long as the company can tell the facts “clearly”, he believes Apple will prevail against Epic Games.

And Apple released a press release in Canada promoting the App Store’s prowess in the region.