EU: Apple to permit competing app shops on iPhones

Apple is going to enable competing app shops for iPhones in the European Union.

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Starting in March, Apple will permit users of its devices bought in the EU to utilize other app stores.

Currently, the company’s App Store is the only place where iPhone users can download apps.

Apple has consistently argued that its policies safeguard consumers’ security.

However, it has been charged with establishing a monopoly, forcing clients and developers to utilize its channels, and taking up to 30% of developers’ fees.

As a result, developers who do not meet Apple’s standards to be featured on the App Store or who do not wish to pay Apple’s fees are not exposed to the millions of customers who use Apple devices.

At this point, the UK’s Digital Markets Bill, which is still passing through Parliament, is expected to subject Apple’s business practices to a comparable level of regulatory scrutiny, although the reforms will not yet be implemented there.

Fortnite’s developer, Epic, is well known for pulling their popular game from the App Store due to issues with the store’s standards. It can still be played online, but it hasn’t been accessible on the App Store since 2020.

Theoretically, this action may allow European iPhone owners to download the Fortnite software again through another app store.

This action coincides with the implementation of the EU’s Digital Markets Act. The new law aims to level the playing field for smaller and established businesses by regulating the biggest corporations that control access to services like app stores and search engines.

Additionally, Apple promised to expand browser options, enabling European Union citizens to choose not to use the company’s Safari web browser from the moment they launch it.

Though it was establishing strict guidelines for all new alternative app stores and apps, it cautioned that users will face more security risks as a result of this shift, as well as a higher chance of falling victim to fraud, malware, and scams concealed in programs downloaded from other sources.

Apple said, “The changes we’re announcing today help to protect EU users from the unavoidably increased privacy and security threats this regulation brings.” These modifications also comply with the requirements of the EU’s Digital Markets Act.

The US tech company promises that its high-end goods provide an additional layer of protection, which drives up the price.

There are already more marketplaces from which Android apps may be obtained. Malware is therefore significantly more prevalent on Android smartphones than on Apple ones.

The goal of the UK’s plans as well as the new EU regulations is to preserve free and open markets that allow many businesses to coexist peacefully.

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