Apple today completely overhauled its app system, introducing changes that allow developers to distribute their apps through alternative app stores and use alternative methods of payment in iOS 17.4. Unfortunately, these changes are limited to countries that are in the European Union, and they won’t be implemented worldwide.
There are 27 EU countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.
Options to install apps through alternative app stores will only be available in the countries listed above, and elsewhere in the world, there will be no changes to how apps are installed and distributed.
Apple said that it is limiting these changes to the EU because the company is concerned about how alternative app stores and payment methods will impact user privacy and security. Apple claims that users are now at risk for being exposed to malware, illicit and questionable app content, pirated software, scams, and fraud.
The updates to the iOS app ecosystem were mandated by Europe’s Digital Markets Act, which Apple must comply with by March 6, 2024. If Apple did not change its app rules, it could have faced significant fines levied by the European Commission.
Given Apple’s concerns over user privacy and security, the company is unlikely to implement similar changes worldwide without being forced to by similar legislation from other countries. Note that these features are tied to the iOS 17.4 beta that was released today. Apple plans to release iOS 17.4 in March.Tags: App Store, European Union, European CommissionThis article, “These Are the Countries Where You Can Install Apps Outside of the iOS App Store” first appeared on MacRumors.comDiscuss this article in our forums
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Author: Juli Clover