Apple and Epic are ready for war
Image: Epic Games
Good morning! This Thursday, what's in store in the Epic v. Apple trial, what Peter Thiel thinks about China and tech, what Apple means when it says "no tracking" and why Lyft's president supports raising taxes.
Apple and Epic both filed Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law documents overnight. That's a fancy name for "the giant, many-hundreds-of-pages documents that detail all the evidence we have and how we plan to fight in court."
The stakes here have been clear for some time: Epic believes Apple is a rent-seeking monopolist that is stifling innovation and ought to be required to let developers sell mobile apps and collect payments outside its own systems. Apple says it created the iPhone, and Epic simply wants to reap all the benefits of its enormous success without paying for it.
But we do know more about how the fight will go. A big part of Apple's case will focus on "Project Liberty," the internal name for Epic's plot to pick antitrust fights with Google and Apple.
One argument Apple said it expects to hear is, "Well, what about the Mac?" Proponents of Epic's suit say that the Mac provides the right path forward: It has an App Store that provides all the upsides Apple claims, but developers can sell their apps outside the store commission-free and users can choose where they download them.
Both sides continue to be feisty in their filings. We're going to get 90 hours of testimony in May, and it's going to be wild.
We don't often hear from Peter Thiel anymore, but this week at the Nixon Seminar on Conservative Realism and National Security, Thiel expounded on China and all sorts of other tech-related issues. Here are a few of the greatest hits:
Apple's App Tracking Transparency is the thing that goes bump in the night for advertising companies: Nobody knows quite when it's coming or what it'll do, but a pop-up in every app saying "Can I track you?" has everyone worried.
Apple promised the feature in "early spring," and well, here we are. But it looks like it's coming, as Apple published a whitepaper and gave TechCrunch some more information on what to expect.
In a different kind of tracking news, Apple also announced it's officially opening up the Find My app to third parties. You'll be able to track your Belkin headphones, your VanMoof bike and your Chipolo Bluetooth tag through Apple's own systems. That's pretty clearly a gesture to Tile, which has picked an antitrust fight with Apple — and maybe an indication that AirTags are coming soon?
Technology has been the leading sector in trust since Edelman began its Trust Barometer 21 years ago. Since that time, trust in business has risen while trust in technology has declined – and this year, the decline has been dramatic.
Emi Nietfeld wrote about her time at Google, and how speaking up about harassment changed her perspective on work:
Polestar is building a climate-neutral car, and CEO Thomas Ingenlath said it won't take the easy way out:
Wix is running attack ads against WordPress, and Matt Mullenweg isn't having it:
Lyft's John Zimmer is another tech exec in favor of raising the corporate tax rate:
That's how many people voted in the Amazon warehouse workers' union election in Bessemer, Alabama, Anna Kramer reports. That's out of more than 5,800 eligible workers. Next up: a public count, which will begin today or Friday, after Amazon and the union spent eight days reviewing the validity of each ballot with the National Labor Relations Board.
McDonald's has always been … different in France. (Royale with Cheese, anyone?) So it feels appropriate that Francey D's is the first into the fast-food NFT space, with several menu items on the docket including french fries and Big Macs. But they won't be for sale; McDonald's is using the NFTs as a reward for a social media campaign it will run this coming weekend. It's going to be the food event of the season. I'm hungry just thinking about it.
If technology has enabled us to stay connected during the pandemic, why are we trusting it so much less? According to the Edelman Trust Barometer, a big reason why is the fear that automation will lead to job loss – a concern accelerated by the pandemic.
Today's Source Code was written by David Pierce, with help from Anna Kramer and Shakeel Hashim. Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or our tips line, email@example.com. Enjoy your day; see you tomorrow.
Correction: An earlier version of this story misspelled Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers's name. This story was updated on April 8, 2021.