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  • Chris Bratton - Tech Journalist

EU new law forcing Apple to allow sideloading and third-party app stores

The Apple ecosystem is quite hard to get out of. The App Store is an excellent example of a closed system measured by the company. The EU Digital Markets Act is forcing Apple to allow sideloading apps. Also, allowing third-party app stores should be given a chance to ensure users' freedom.

The EU antitrust is constantly monitoring large tech and how it's affecting everything around. "Apple's Epic" battle with the antitrust ruling is still pending. The legal action brought by EU antitrust to give Apple users diverse options and flexible payment methods to developers is an eye-opener.

We've seen Apple saving $6 billion by removing chargers and headphones from the box in a recent report. These parts need to purchase separately, widening up the company revenue portfolio. In return, CEO Tim Cook received a $750 million bonus from Apple.

Co controversies force Apple to open up its policies and make them flexible. The EU legislation unveiled by the EU launched an initial proposal for the bloc. Digital Markets Act or DMA came up a step ahead as EU spokesperson confirmed the provision.

Johannes Bahrke, a spokesperson for the EC, said they believe the smartphone owner "should have the freedom to choose how to use it." It makes proper sense, but Apple thought process is something different. Cook said sideloading would break the security in restructuring they've stitched in all these years and "destroy the security of the iPhone."

According to EC, the owner's freedom to use a product should not be limited to one store only. Users should be able to source apps from the alt market. Android has a similar feature already. Android users can sideload apps, which requires separate permission.

If DMA proceedings go perfectly, Apple will introduce a new application ecosystem. Users would enjoy safe and secure services of the default app and gain an additional advantage by opting in sideloading.

An additional requirement to meet DMA policy is allowing third-party stores on its platform. These third-party stores will contain their application version, giving users a broader choice to source their applications. Currently, Apple's policy remains simple: download and install apps from its store. It helps them to funnel revenue.

Apple's response concerning the event was, "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."

Options should be there for users to sideload apps. The DMA will give users power and extra opportunities to opt-in for other safe app stores. Similar stuff is already there on Android, and it's not affecting security that much.

Users should be able to decide when and where they are sourcing applications. The App Store privacy policy will need a revision as currently, one source is there for apps. On the other hand, Mac allows sideloading apps, similar to Windows computers.

On the other hand, a legal fight continues as developers will be introducing their payment methods inside the App Store. Installing apps from a third-party source (also known as sideloading) concerns Apple as they take in a fair share of profit from one funnel of transactions. Apple should follow a similar toggle offered by Google's Android. Users can manually turn them off and on to sideload apps from third parties.

Another update on the report says Apple would have to allow users Safari browser uninstall permission. Othe stock apps that are not possible to uninstall legally at the moment will be changed. They can be replaced with third-party alternatives.

The DMA board published rules, which we may feature in another article. Companies with a valuation of more than €75 billion with annual sales of €7.5 billion and 45 million monthly active users are the "gatekeeper" requirement to fall under the new hearings.


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