The European Union wants Apple to provide iOS users with more freedom as part of the proposed Digital Markets Act. If approved, it would force the company to allow side-loading and third-party app stores on its platform.
According to the European Commission, smartphone users should have the freedom to choose how to use it.
“This freedom includes being able to opt for alternative sources of apps on your smartphone,” the Commission’s spokesperson Johannes Bahrke said in a statement. “With the DMA, a smartphone owner would still be able to enjoy safe and secure services of the default app store on their smartphones. On top of that, if a user so chooses, the DMA would allow a smartphone owner to also opt for other safe app stores.”
In accordance with the DMA, Apple would have to allow iOS users to install apps from outside the App Store and allow third-party stores. On top of that, the company would be forced to let developers use third-party payment systems.
Apple, however, raised the concerns that the DMA might lead to new security and privacy risks. As the company’s spokesperson Emma Wilson told The Verge, the act will also “prohibit us from charging for intellectual property in which we invest a great deal.”
The DMA must be voted for by the European Parliament. If approved, it might come into force later this year.