In the first half of 2024, iPhone users in the EU will be able to sideload apps

According to the information uncovered by Mark Gurman, iPhone users in the EU will be able to download apps outside the App Store. The new change will be implemented in the first half of next year. It complies with the European regulations. In simple words, users will be able to download apps even without using the App Store. It means that developers will no longer be required to pay Apple’s 15 to 30 percent fees.

According to Gurman, Apple will launch a “very controlled system” that enables users in the EU to install programs that are located outside. It is also said that Apple will modify messaging and payment apps as part of the modifications, most likely through a regionalized iOS 17 upgrade.

Recently, a report emerged that pointed out that sideloading will be available with the iOS 17.2 software update that will be rolled out next month. It is the opposite of what is claimed by Gurman. The report misinterpreted some new code linked to a future framework that would allow companies to provide apps to their staff members as being related to sideloading.

Back in November 2022, the EU implemented the Digital Markets Act (DMA). According to this act, gatekeeper companies must provide transparency with their services and platforms to developers and other companies. It could have a drastic impact on Apple since the company could include significant changes to the Store‌, Messages, FaceTime, Siri, and more.

According to Apple, sideloading has the potential to breach user’s privacy and security. Since users will be more prone to scams, data tracking, and malware-related issues. Whatever the company states, in the end, it has to abide by the EU regulations or pay a fine for a violation that will account for 20% of the company’s global revenue.

Gurman stated in a report from December 2022 that Apple was thinking about enforcing security measures including verification, a procedure for which it might charge a fee rather than getting paid through app sales. Users can use software outside of the Mac App Store and remain safe thanks to Apple’s authentication system for Macs. If other countries go for a similar approach, then we might expect a rise in the number of app stores available in the European region. Furthermore, even the US is considering a rule that will require Apple to permit sideloading.

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