Fortnite on iPhone returning – by streaming it in GeForce

Playing Fortnite on an iPhone will soon be possible once more, despite Apple removing it from the App Store and later terminating Epic’s developer account.

It’s being made possible by a move that will interest more than just Fortnite players: GPU maker Nvidia has developed a version of its GeForce cloud gaming service that runs in Safari on iOS …

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Nvidia first revealed that it was working on the project back in August.

Nvidia is pushing ahead with its cloud gaming PC strategy and extending reach to modern browsers initially through Chromebooks, but potentially to all relevant connected devices in the future. This could mean streaming games to a browser on a PC, smartphone or tablet.

Streaming to the iOS version of Chrome is unlikely to be supported – Google’s Chrome browser version of Stadia is not yet playable on iPhone or iPads – so using Chrome is not a workaround to the current lack of native cloud gaming apps available on the App Store. However, Nvidia has stated that it believes it will be able to stream GeForce Now to any WebRTC compliant browser on whatever device.

Currently Safari on iOS is WebRTC compliant so conceivably iPhone and iPad users could access GeForce Now through the browser in the future.

BBC News now reports that iOS compatibility is expected before the holidays.

Owners of iPhones and iPads will soon be able to play Fortnite again, via a cloud service, the BBC has discovered. Nvidia has developed a version of its GeForce cloud gaming service that runs in the mobile web browser Safari […]

Nvidia currently offers GeForce Now for Mac, Windows, Android and Chromebook computers. It has not formally announced that it is bringing the service to iOS but is expected to do so before the winter holidays.

That will mean that Epic Games will be able to circumvent Apple’s 30% cut of in-app purchases.

It’s not yet clear how good playability will be.

Nvidia uses remote computer servers to process the players’ commands and to generate graphics. Streaming the relevant data back and forth to the mobile devices introduces a very short delay.

Winning or losing Fortnite’s multiplayer battles can come down to split-second decisions, so lag could be a problem.

What seems clearer is that Apple won’t be amused. The legal battle between Epic Games and the iPhone maker could take years to reach a final conclusion. This approach would allow Epic to continue to offer the game to iPhone users without having to pay Apple one cent.

The latest in the legal dispute is that Epic has claimed Apple’s App Store contract is ‘illegal.’

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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