European legislation now compels Apple to facilitate the installation of apps from third-party sources on iOS devices, signaling a strategic shift to align with prevailing antitrust laws in the region. Substantial evidence discovered within the code of iOS 17.2 suggests a methodical progression by the American tech giant.
Navigating the DMA Landscape:
Presently, iOS users are restricted to sourcing applications exclusively from the Apple-controlled App Store. The European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), enacted last year, seeks to mitigate the potential misuse of dominant market positions by major tech corporations. A pivotal requirement of this legislation mandates companies to open up their platforms, allowing users to download and install applications from diverse sources.
Insights from iOS 17.2 Code:
Recent revelations in the iOS 17.2 code illuminate Apple’s proactive stance toward accommodating third-party app installations on iOS devices, notes NIX Solutions. The noteworthy inclusion of the Managed App Distribution framework in the code signifies a broader initiative beyond initial speculation. Analysts have discerned a new permission within the system, granting third-party applications the authority to establish their independent app stores. This Application Programming Interface (API) encompasses fundamental controls, facilitating the download, installation, and update of applications from external sources. Additionally, it includes compatibility checks with the user’s device and the installed iOS version. Notably, the API features a region-locked aspect, potentially indicating Apple’s intention to restrict its use to specific countries.