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Sundar Pichai to testify in Epic Games vs Google case next week

Sundar Pichai
Photo Credit : IANS

San Francisco: Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai is likely to testify in Epic Games’s lawsuit against Google in a US court next week.

The Fortnite game developer seeks to call Pichai as a witness on Tuesday as it makes its case alleging that Google Play is an unlawful monopoly, reports The Verge.

“In court documents, Google requested to use a podium in the courtroom on Tuesday, which suggests that Pichai may indeed appear to testify,” the report noted.

Last month, in the US vs. Google case, Pichai stood behind a podium instead of sitting because of “apparent back issues”.

The lawsuit was filed after Google pulled Fortnite from the Play store.

Epic is arguing that Google’s monopolistic control on its Google Play Store for Android smartphones violates both state and federal antitrust laws.

Meanwhile, Google offered a $147 million deal to game developer Epic Games to launch its popular game Fortnite on Google Play store, the tech giant told the court.

Purnima Kochikar, Vice President, Play Partnerships at Google, said in her testimony that the deal was approved and presented to Epic but not accepted, reports The Verge.

The deal would have seen the money dispensed over a three-year period of “incremental funding” (ending in 2021) to Epic.

In a document justifying the deal, Google wrote that “Fortnite’s absence could result in $130 million (up to $250 million) direct revenue loss with Play” and that there could be a “downstream impact of $550 million (up to $3.6 billion) potential revenue loss if broad contagion to other developers”.

The Epic vs Google trial began this week on Monday. Google has defended its 30 per cent cut on transactions for apps via its Play store.

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