Apple cites bevy of scared users to back up its case against the EU DMA

Posted:
in iOS

Apple has to comply with the EU's new law about rival App Stores, but it's protesting all the way and is now showing emails from users who fear the changes.

Apple CEO Tim Cook
Tim Cook



Ahead of the March 7, 2024 deadline and the facility for third-party app stores in the EU that will come with iOS 17.4, Apple has published a whitepaper detailing its compliance with the law, and its objections to it. As part of that, the whitepaper includes the text of 16 emails sent to Tim Cook by concerned users within the European Union.

"I am feeling increasingly more concerned and scared about my digital privacy and online safety in the EU," says one. "As an EU citizen and Apple user I always believed to have had the perfect balance between regulatory protection (like GDPR) and Apple safety features (like App Tracking Transparency and App Store)."

Graphic featuring three email excerpts addressed to Tim Cook about EU changes to iPhone, with concerns over iOS sideloading.
Sample of the emails from concerned EU users that Apple has published



"I really hope that you will offer me as an EU Client the option to not use any sideloaders," says another. "I want to rely on the proven App Store and not some nonsense..."

"Please stop doing this," says yet another, who says they are "very satisfied with iOS because it is not like Android." This writer appears to believe the new rules are Apple's choice, and so concludes: "Please do not enable sideloading... we want iOS to be like the old one, with strict rules and extremely high security."

"I actually believe that the security of the iPhone and iPad and all other devices will be massively jeopardized if this update is installed," says one more. "I'm really scared of it and I think it makes the iPhone a little bit less secure as it is."

Email from one EU user saying they will never sideload apps onto their iPhone
One EU user says they will never sideload apps onto their iPhone



Apple's has continuously protested that rival app stores, or sideloading, presents a security risk to iPhone users. Apple's Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, Craig Federighi, has said that "sideloading is a cybercriminal's best friend."



Read on AppleInsider

watto_cobra
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 33
    CiaranFCiaranF Posts: 23member
    I fail to see why this is an issue for some. If you’re concerned about other AppStores and side loading apps, then the simple solution is to carry on doing what you’re doing with your phone and don’t download from anywhere else expect the  AppStore. It’s really simple. If someone else’s security or device gets compromised then that’s their problem and not yours. Nothing for you to be concerned about. And just to confirm, I’m not in favour of alt app stores or sideloading either. 
    muthuk_vanalingamgatorguyxyzzy-xxxwilliamlondongrandact73docno42
  • Reply 2 of 33
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I was under the impression that the EU regulations require Apple to permit side loading and other app stores, and not to require the users to use other app stores, right?  If that's the case, most of these letters seem to be based on misinformation, and thus not really supportive of Apple's desire to avoid allowing other app stores.
    muthuk_vanalingamxyzzy-xxxwilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 33
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,362member
    Apple can’t protect users from themselves. All Apple can do it erect safety barriers to let users know when and where they are putting themselves at risk. The National Park Service puts fences around the edges of places like the Grand Canyon. This doesn’t stop people from climbing over the fences and occasionally they pay the ultimate price for their stupidity, uncontrollable impulses, or whatever motivates them to ignore the barriers and signs. 

    It comes down to risk vs benefit. Considering the hassle and cost associated with things like identity theft, what are you saving by circumventing the safety barriers? But it’s your choice. Have at it. 
    muthuk_vanalingamteejay2012watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 33
    The sky is falling!
    xyzzy-xxxwilliamlondon
  • Reply 5 of 33
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,251member
    The issue most people are not understanding, especially the corrupt EU, is that once sideloading is possible, malware will be much easier to install on many iPhones. Just because I will never allow sideloading on my iPhone doesn't mean that my iPhone won't be subjected to malware from people who now have malware on theirs sending their malware to my iPhone through email and messages. The biggest malware will be government-sponsored and required apps, which some countries already force users to install. I will no longer have a choice, it will be made for me by government agencies demanding to have access to my personal items. I'm saying this because I know what can happen and have actively worked on securing Apple hardware for the last few decades. What the EU is doing is opening Pandora's box and they don't care.
    cg27williamlondonCookItOffmjpbuyappleinsideruserteejay2012watto_cobrabeowulfschmidtjony0
  • Reply 6 of 33
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,667member
    They say ignorance is bliss but seeing as Apple is waving this particular 'user concern' flag it would be nice to know how many actually wrote to them. 

    Not that anything they wrote was even remotely relevant. 

    No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 

    I even have huge reservations about the term 'sideloading' as we aren't talking about apps downloaded and installed without any control. We are talking about apps that have been through a store approval process and notarized by Apple (at least under the current proposals). 

    What is perhaps more worrying is that Apple is actually parading these ignorant claims around as if they represent something. 

    Alternative app stores can easily be safer than Apple's App Store. There are zero technical limitations to pulling that off. The question is how far external stores will go with regards to vetting and security, not the security protections themselves. 

    Maybe the EU should fire back with a selection of emails from consumers who complain about Apple not opening up to competition. 



    edited March 1
  • Reply 7 of 33
    CiaranF said:
    I fail to see why this is an issue for some. If you’re concerned about other AppStores and side loading apps, then the simple solution is to carry on doing what you’re doing with your phone and don’t download from anywhere else expect the  AppStore. It’s really simple. If someone else’s security or device gets compromised then that’s their problem and not yours. Nothing for you to be concerned about. And just to confirm, I’m not in favour of alt app stores or sideloading either. 
    It's easy to understand the issue: the EU doesn't require app developers to provide a version of their app in the App Store. That means that some apps previously available through the App Store could become exclusively available on 3rd party stores. So users could be faced with a choice of downloading from 3rd party app stores or simply not using the app anymore. 
    edited March 1 mjpbuybaconstangHedwareteejay2012watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 8 of 33
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    tmaywilliamlondonbaconstangteejay2012watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 9 of 33
    kmareikmarei Posts: 179member
    why can't there be a setting in the Settings app, same as android now
    "allow untrusted sources?" or "Allow apps not from Apple App store?"
    with a brief description of the risks, and you click yes or no?
    if you keep the default no, its the same setup you have now. nothing but apple app store
    if you click yes, then you can get what you want, anywhere you want it from, but then apple can see you accepted those terms, and if anything bad happens to the phone (infection etc)
    they are not at fault and say , you agreed to these terms
    gatorguybaconstang
  • Reply 10 of 33
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,667member
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    Did anyone say they were? 

    That said, buying an iPhone does force you to use iOS and limits choice and competition. Two elements that consumers were never ever informed of. 

    In the EU at least, some of that should see change. 
  • Reply 11 of 33
    avon b7 said: That said, buying an iPhone does force you to use iOS and limits choice and competition. Two elements that consumers were never ever informed of. 
    How can it limit choice/competition when you already admitted no one was forced to use it? Not being forced to use it = choice/competition. You're completely contradicting yourself just like the EU. I've already pointed out that users CAN be forced to do something they don't want to do under the DMA, i.e., either download from a 3rd party store or not use the app at all. 
    edited March 1 mjpbuybaconstangwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 12 of 33
    xyzzy-xxxxyzzy-xxx Posts: 185member
    rob53 said:
    The issue most people are not understanding, especially the corrupt EU, is that once sideloading is possible, malware will be much easier to install on many iPhones.
    Strong words but not much wisdom: Apple keeps notarization (and checks for malware) also in EU, sideloading is not really happening in the EU. Maybe it will come to corrupt USA. The main difference is that Apple cannot restrict the content of apps (as long the content is legal in the EU).



    edited March 1 muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondon
  • Reply 13 of 33
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,667member
    avon b7 said: That said, buying an iPhone does force you to use iOS and limits choice and competition. Two elements that consumers were never ever informed of. 
    How can it limit choice/competition when you already admitted no one was forced to use it? Not being forced to use it = choice/competition. You're completely contradicting yourself just like the EU. I've already pointed out that users CAN be forced to do something they don't want to do under the DMA, i.e., either download from a 3rd party store or not use the app at all. 
    No. I made no reference to iOS. It was you who through that in. 

    The article is on the app store situation. 

    No one would be forced to use apps from an alternative store. The alternative stores are coming to market as a result of legal requirements but users are free to completely ignore them (not even install them). 

    The DMA/DSA makes no reference to which operating systems must run on devices. 

    There is zero risk if users choose not to change their habits. That is up to them.
  • Reply 14 of 33
    tmaytmay Posts: 6,328member
    avon b7 said:
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    Did anyone say they were? 

    That said, buying an iPhone does force you to use iOS and limits choice and competition. Two elements that consumers were never ever informed of. 

    In the EU at least, some of that should see change. 
    Laughable that anyone would need to be informed about iOS, after almost 18 years on the market, unless they were hiding in a cave on the Mariana Islands somewhere as a holdout from WWII.
    edited March 1 13485williamlondonbaconstangwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 15 of 33
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,667member
    tmay said:
    avon b7 said:
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    Did anyone say they were? 

    That said, buying an iPhone does force you to use iOS and limits choice and competition. Two elements that consumers were never ever informed of. 

    In the EU at least, some of that should see change. 
    Laughable that anyone would need to be informed about iOS, after almost 18 years on the marker, unless they were hiding in a cave on the Mariana Islands somewhere as a holdout from WWII.
    I don't think anyone needs to be informed about that. However, as a statement of fact in the context of what I was replying to, the reality is exactly that. 
  • Reply 16 of 33
    socalreysocalrey Posts: 17member
    So if someone you know in Europe downloads malware that can infect their phone, then it’s safe to assume that (from and within their device) your contact info, the emails you send them, the texts you send them, the photos you send them, the things you say if you’re near them, and your voice and image are all on the table for somehow being captured maliciously. Or am I being overly dramatic here? 
    baconstangwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 33
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    Exactly. Which is why this law is unnecessary. If you're unhappy with the Apple ecosystem, go buy and buy Android phone. Problem solved. As someone already stated, 3rd party AppStores and side loading will likely reduced the number of apps in the AppStore, forcing users to use several different stores or side loading to get the same app, which is not only a security issue, but a billing issue. What to cancel your subscription to an App or get a refund, maybe you'll now have to "call", wait for 40 minutes on the phone to get a rep and then be subjected to a sales pitch and endless delays, instead of a one click cancel for a refund. Let's not forget about the malware.

     I buy Apple becuase I want the ecosystem, which means I want anyone who sells on the iOS platform to only use the Apple AppStore. This EU law restricts my choice to have a walled garden.


    mjpbuywilliamlondonbaconstangwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 18 of 33
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,362member
    xyzzy-xxx said:
    rob53 said:
    The issue most people are not understanding, especially the corrupt EU, is that once sideloading is possible, malware will be much easier to install on many iPhones.
    Strong words but not much wisdom: Apple keeps notarization (and checks for malware) also in EU, sideloading is not really happening in the EU. Maybe it will come to corrupt USA. The main difference is that Apple cannot restrict the content of apps (as long the content is legal in the EU).



    I agree that calling EU regulators corrupt is way out of line. I don’t see them being a whole lot different than regulators and politicians in many other countries who are struggling to remain relevant in a world that’s increasingly focused on technology and social media, and by proxy, the relatively few companies that control it and have implicitly captured mindshare and influence. 

    As much as I disagree with the EU regulators’ method of trying to restore their relevancy by cutting down to size those who are exerting control implicitly through their creation and maintenance of popular platforms like social media apps and app stores, at least they are trying to influence things that matter to some real people. Of course some of the imposed “remedies” are seen as a detriment to others, and rightfully so. 

    Is the EU really any worse than regulators and politicians in the US who are totally focused on their own agendas and don’t really care about anyone other than themselves and their tribe? They’re not even doing the jobs they were “hired” to do. They are totally disconnected from anything dealing with their constituents and are completely focused on their donors at the expense of everything else, including honor, responsibility, and truth. At least the EU sort of understands the importance of real and tangible issues that some of their constituents are concerned about rather than using social and cultural triggers to compile votes that’ll keep them sucking up other people’s money and making their constituents miserable. 

    The difficult part for me is that companies like Apple have done everything they can do to win against their competitors while establishing reliable, complete, and long lived systems and ecosystems for their customers. Of course Apple benefits substantially from what they’ve created and fleshed out, but that’s the goal of every business. But everything Apple has done is only meaningful, relevant, and in a position of mass adoption and now scrutiny only because they’ve been extremely successful. 

    If Apple failed at any point in their efforts to build and sustain what they’ve created, nobody would give a rat’s ass about Apple. Failure is forgiven and forgotten but success is scrutinized and put into a corral controlled by others. This seems punitive and vindictive. 

    Again, it’s not those who built out all of these wildly popular and compelling systems who are to blame, for their success even. The fact that some of these systems, like social media, were built with no concerns for privacy or bad actors and subsequently went on to see massive adoption with no or feeble guard rails in place is a major issue. Fix that. But Apple didn’t let that happen and they’ve always strived to proceed with caution. Now the safeguards that Apple has put in place are being viewed as impositions to those who want to graft on to Apple’s success.

    I understand that a lot of folks believe that everyone should get a cut of the action regardless of their direct contribution to the successful venture. But removing safeguards as a way to improve competition is like someone telling me that I should leave at least one door on my house unlocked at all times so my neighbors and random strangers can come over and share my TV, computers, HiFi equipment, tools, bedrooms, etc., that I’ve acquired through years of hard work and sacrificing other things in my life. As far as I’m concerned, they should buy their own stuff using their own funds or whatever it takes to get what they want. Leave my stuff alone. Earn it yourself. 
    edited March 1 baconstangroundaboutnowwatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 33
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,667member
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
    Exactly. Which is why this law is unnecessary. If you're unhappy with the Apple ecosystem, go buy and buy Android phone. Problem solved. As someone already stated, 3rd party AppStores and side loading will likely reduced the number of apps in the AppStore, forcing users to use several different stores or side loading to get the same app, which is not only a security issue, but a billing issue. What to cancel your subscription to an App or get a refund, maybe you'll now have to "call", wait for 40 minutes on the phone to get a rep and then be subjected to a sales pitch and endless delays, instead of a one click cancel for a refund. Let's not forget about the malware.

     I buy Apple becuase I want the ecosystem, which means I want anyone who sells on the iOS platform to only use the Apple AppStore. This EU law restricts my choice to have a walled garden.


    There's a fair bit of 'I' in that thinking. 

    These kinds of laws are designed for everyone in trying to level the playing field and stimulate competition. 

    There is zero reason for an app to abandon the app store.

    Why would a developer want to do that? 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 20 of 33
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,213member
    avon b7 said:  No one is forcing people to use anything they don't want. 
    No one was forcing people to buy an iPhone or use iOS. 
     As someone already stated, 3rd party AppStores and side loading will likely reduced the number of apps in the AppStore, forcing users to use several different stores or side loading to get the same app, which is not only a security issue, but a billing issue. 


    That hasn't happened with the official Google Play Store, and there's a multitude of 3rd party stores to choose from. What makes you believe developers and/or users are so fed up with Apple's AppStore that they are ready to flee the scene to a third party and take their toys with them to the new home? 
    muthuk_vanalingam
Sign In or Register to comment.