Fortnite fans on Android may have an opportunity to get the game's APK file straight from the source rather than using the Play Store, according to a report from NDTV's Gadgets 360. Specifically, it seems that some of the code hidden in the official website's HTML source points to installation instructions and an APK download, though there's no APK file just yet. A Redditor going by the username "thesbros" got the instructions to display at one point, but the relevant post seems to have since been deleted. As of right now, there is no official APK file to download, so fans are cautioned against downloading any APK files they may stumble across until further notice.
This development may mean a couple of things. It could just mean that Epic Games wants to offer Fortnite to Android users who voluntarily abstain from using Google services, usually seen in the custom ROM scene, as well as users who can't use Google Play, such as those in China. It could also mean that there will be some kind of a limited test run using a sideloadable APK, likely before the game makes it to the Play Store. A third possibility is that Epic Games will be avoiding the Google Play Store entirely, but given the Play Store's cornerstone status in the Android games market, that is an unlikely scenario indeed.
Early rumors are pointing to Fortnite being exclusive to the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 for 30 days after the phone's release. It's very unlikely that Epic Games will offer the game's APK file on its website before this period is over if that is the case, since doing so would undermine the whole reason for making the game a timed exclusive and likely constitute a breach of contract with Samsung. The phone, and thus the game, is rumored to be out sometime in late August and is said to feature heavily in the next Samsung Unpacked event scheduled to take place on August 9, targeting the Galaxy Note 9 as the vendor's premiere mobile gaming gadget. Epic's website lists a number of other Android smartphones that will be supported once the game is fully released as well.