Fortnite is now available on Google Play, but Epic Games will also continue to distribute directly

Fortnite Chapter 2 Season 2 Battle Pass
Fortnite Chapter 2 Season 2 Battle Pass (Image credit: Epic Games)

What you need to know

  • Epic Games announced it was putting Fortnite on the Google Play Store.
  • The game had previously been available as a direct download through Epic.
  • In a statement, Epic said that "disadvantages" Google places on outside apps has forced the change.

When Fortnite originally released for mobile devices, the game was not made available for the Google Play Store. However, Epic announced today that Fortnite would be put on the Google Play Store going forward, with the game officially available in the store now for Android users.

After a couple of years of being available only through Epic Games, Fortnite is now available on the Google Play Store.

Previously, Fortnite was kept away from the Google Play Store in a seemingly purposeful attempt. In 2019, Epic told The Verge that it had asked Google for an exemption on its 30% cut that the company collects for in-app purchases. Google didn't grant them any such exemption, so Fortnite never appeared on the Google Play Store.

In a statement sent to Android Central on Tuesday, however, Epic said that the reason for the change is due to what it calls "disadvantages" that Google puts on apps located outside of the Google Play Store.

After 18 months of operating Fortnite on Android outside of the Google Play Store, we've come to a basic realization:Google puts software downloadable outside of Google Play at a disadvantage, through technical and business measures such as scary, repetitive security pop-ups for downloaded and updated software, restrictive manufacturer and carrier agreements and dealings, Google public relations characterizing third party software sources as malware, and new efforts such as Google Play Protect to outright block software obtained outside the Google Play store.Because of this, we've launched Fortnite for Android on the Google Play Store. We'll continue to operate the Epic Games App and Fortnite outside of Google Play, too.We hope that Google will revise its policies and business dealings in the near future, so that all developers are free to reach and engage in commerce with customers on Android and in the Play Store through open services, including payment services, that can compete on a level playing field.

Anthony J Nash

Anthony Nash has been writing about games and the gaming industry for nearly a decade. When he’s not writing about games, he’s usually playing them. You can find him on Twitter talking about games or sports at @_anthonynash.