December 3, 2022

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Apple will have to allow sideloading of third-party apps and app stores under new EU law

Apple will have to allow sideloading of third-party apps and app stores under new EU law

Apple will have to allow users to install apps from outside the App Store under legislation recently unveiled by the European Union. This condition is included in Initial suggestion for mass Law sweeping digital marketsor DMA, who came One step closer to being signed into law This week, an EU spokesperson confirmed that the item was still included.

“We believe that the owner of a smartphone should have the freedom to choose how it is used,” European Commission spokesperson Johannes Bahrik said in an emailed statement. “This freedom includes the ability to choose alternate sources of apps on your smartphone. Using DMA, the smartphone owner will still be able to enjoy safe and secure services of the default app store on their smartphone. Furthermore, if the user chooses to, DMA will allow the smartphone owner to choose stores Other safe apps, too.”

In addition to allowing third-party stores on its platform, Apple will also have to allow users to install apps from third-party sources (a practice known as sideloading) and allow developers to use the App Store Without using Apple’s payment systems.

The DMA has not yet been voted into law by the European Parliament but is expected to be approved without much hassle. That could mean the DMA goes into effect as early as October of this year. EU member states will then be able to choose how exactly EU law is interpreted in national law.

In the past, Apple has fiercely objected to sideloading the iPhone, arguing that it would compromise the security of its platform. Allowing sideloading may degrade the security of the iOS platform and expose users to serious security risks not only in third-party app stores, but also in the App Store. A report issued by Apple last year He said. Tim Cook argued that sideloading would “destroy the security of the iPhone”.

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Although the Mac has long allowed users to download apps from outside the official Apple Store, Apple has argued that this approach is not appropriate on the iPhone because these devices carry more sensitive information. Despite this, there are plenty of ways for users who are determined enough to download apps on their iPhone. AltStore It completely installs a third-party app store on iPhone and Apple Special Enterprise Application Program Allows businesses to download custom applications. TestFlight is often used by developers to distribute apps that are not fully approved for the App Store as well.

The European Union believes Apple’s security concerns could be mitigated by putting the choice in the hands of users, allowing them to pick in their device’s settings and choose where they prefer to install apps from. Google already offers similar toggles on Android, which the user must manually turn off to download apps from third-party sources.

Accessing the comment, Apple said it was concerned that “certain DMA provisions will create unnecessary privacy and security holes for our users while others prevent us from charging for intellectual property in which we invest so much.”