Epic v. Apple ruling put on hold after appeals court grants reprieve

An appeals court has suspended one of the most sweeping parts of the Epic v. Apple ruling, suspending enforcement of the injunction issued by the lower court. As a result of the ban, Apple can keep its IAP system as the sole source of in-app payments on iOS, despite the court’s previous ruling that the exclusive arrangement is illegal.

The injunction, issued Wednesday afternoon, will not overturn the earlier ruling, but will suspend enforcement until the appeals court has fully heard the case, a process likely to take months.

At the very least, Apple has shown that its appeal raises serious questions about the merits of the court’s decision. “Therefore, we are giving Apple’s motion to suspend part (i) of paragraph (1) of the permanent ban. The suspension will remain in effect until the mandate is pronounced in this appeal.”

In September, Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers demanded that Apple allow third-party payment systems on iOS apps as part of a broader ruling that dismissed antitrust allegations from Fortnite developer Epic Games. Specifically, the court ruled that from December 9, Apple could no longer ban “buttons or external links” that direct users to payment systems outside the App Store, as the company previously had in its app store guidelines.

Apple had previously requested a court order to suspend the order, but was rejected.

To develop…