The time is now ripe after the approval of the Regulation approved by the European Parliament and the Council last 14 September 2022 and made operational after publication in the Official Journal a month later (it was 12 October): the Apple must give its users the opportunity to download any application which also comes from different sources other than exclusively theApple Store as has always happened, that is, since the first iPhone launched on the market in 2007.
What is sideloading
In short, a real revolution for the Cupertino, California company, which will have to align itself by March 7 to what is already happening elsewhere with Android, for example, which has for some time now offered its own store with apps but also the download of any other product coming from the company. This practice is called sideloadingi.e. the transfer of multimedia files “to a mobile device via USB, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or by writing to a memory card for insertion into the mobile device, but also applies to transferring apps from non-vendor-approved web sources,” the experts explain. It is precisely the final part that interests us and which will allow an epochal change because even on iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple Watch devices it will be possible to download products that come from third-party and external sources.
A big problem also for Cupertono’s turnover which with the Store alone has produced revenues which, in seventeen years, have exceeded 1,100 billion dollars and produced 1.8 million different apps. The multinational has always had it in terms of privacy: our products are better because they come from a safe and bomb-proof source, otherwise the risk is for privacy and security, so much so that in unsuspecting times, after the approval of the EU Regulation, Apple had underlined that “It destroys the security of the iPhone and many privacy initiatives we have created within the App Store.”
The Digital Markets Act is a package that regulates digital services including those on digital markets which includes what has been written so far. The European Commission has appointed six large technology “gatekeeper” companies, which are ordered to ensure oversight and data privacy practices while ensuring that the European market sticks to the rules. “They are prohibited from engaging in anti-competitive practices and cannot demonstrate that they prefer their own or their partners’ products or services”: put simply, Cupertino will also have to open up to sideloading.
The first rumors are circulating from the headquarters in California: it seems that the App Store will only be changed for the EU while it could remain as we know it for the rest of the world. But when will it be possible for European citizens to download the new products? The introduction should take place with the next ones updates Of iOS 17 which, for the first time ever, will give the possibility to download from a developer site outside of Apple.