PUBG developer Krafton (formerly known as Blue Hole) filed a lawsuit on Monday, it’s suing Apple and Google in the United States for distributing the copyright of the PUBG: Battleground game. It accused the app stores of the latter two of not removing games that infringed on its gameplay in time, causing it to lose a lot of revenue.
Specifically, Krafton refers to two games launched by Garena (a game developer based in Singapore), namely “Free Fire” and “Free Fire Max”, which copied its PUBG gameplay. The two games were launched on Apple and Google’s app stores in 2017 and have been downloaded by millions of people. Both games are available for free with in-app purchases.
According to Krafton, “Free Fire and Free Fire Max extensively copy numerous aspects of Battlegrounds, both individually and in combination, including Battlegrounds’ copyrighted unique game-opening “airdrop” feature, the game structure and play, the combination and selection of weapons, armour, and unique objects, locations, and the overall choice of color schemes, materials, and textures.”
Krafton told that on the 21st of December, it asked Free-Fire developers to immediately stop its exploitation of Free Fire and Free Fire Max, which Garena clearly refused. Later, Krafton asked Apple and Google to stop distributing the games and to remove videos from YouTube which featured free fire and free fire max gameplay. But as of now, no action has been taken by Google and Apple and none of the videos has been removed by YouTube yet. Recently, Google lost to Sonos in audio technology patent cases.
In the first three months of 2021, Garena’s game has surpassed $100 million in revenue in the United States. In the year 2021 Free Fire earned $1.1 billion while PUBG:Battleground earned $2.9 billion. It, therefore, appealed to the court and demanded compensation.