A new law in the European Union would force Apple to allow sideloading and third-party app stores.
According to The Verge, Apple would be prevented from requiring users to download apps in its own app store under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). Critics have alleged that this requirement categorized Apple as a monopoly.
Lawmakers said the law promoted “freedom to choose":
“We believe that the owner of a smartphone should have the freedom to choose how to use it,” European Commission spokesperson Johannes Bahrke told The Verge of the law. “This freedom includes being able to opt for alternative sources of apps on your smartphone. With the DMA, a smartphone owner would still be able to enjoy safe and secure services of the default app store on their smart phones. On top of that, if a user so chooses, the DMA would allow a smartphone owner to also opt for other safe app stores.”
Developers would be able to use Apple’s App Store without being forced to use Apple’s payment systems.
For its part, Apple claimed that the law would make the devices less secure.
“Allowing sideloading would degrade the security of the iOS platform and expose users to serious security risks not only on third-party app stores, but also on the App Store,” Apple wrote in a report last year. Tim Cook argued that sideloading would “destroy the security of the iPhone.”
In a statement to The Verge, Apple reiterated its privacy concerns and said that “some provisions of the DMA will create unnecessary privacy and security vulnerabilities for our users while others will prohibit us from charging for intellectual property in which we invest a great deal.”
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