Rumors suggest Apple could enable sideloading of apps with iOS 17. However, the company might bring the feature only to iPhone users in Europe and the UK.
Apple is under regulatory pressure in the EU to enable sideloading on iPhone.
iOS 17’s sideloading feature may not be available worldwide
Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman appeared in the latest MacRumors podcast and revealed several details about iOS 17. He claims that iOS 17 will allow for sideloading of apps, but Apple could limit the feature to Europe only. This will enable the company to comply with the Digital Markets Act in the region.
Apple CEO Tim Cook previously said that the new EU law “destroy(s) the security of the iPhone and a lot of the privacy initiatives that we built into the App Store.” The US legislation also intends to enforce similar rules for app stores, but its efforts lag behind the EU.
Apple did something similar when it changed App Store regulations to abide by some regulatory changes in the Netherlands. Dating apps in the country can use third-party payments service, though the company still takes a 27% cut from developers.
The Cupertino giant could try to downplay iOS 17’s sideloading feature by not announcing it at WWDC23. Additionally, he believes developers who make their apps available on a third-party app store might have to pay an additional fee to Apple to verify their apps.
Find My and Wallet apps could get a big upgrade in iOS 17
Gurman revealed that iOS 17 would focus on enhancing the system apps. He claims there will be a “bigger push on location and Find My-related changes.” The Wallet app could also get some UI tweaks and enhancements.
As for macOS 14, it will seemingly be a minor update. Apple will only focus on adding new features to the OS that are already a part of iOS and iPadOS to deliver a more consistent experience.