By Supantha Mukherjee and Clara-Laeila Laudette
LISBON (Reuters) – Apple software boss Craig Federighi took the stage at the Web Summit in Lisbon to voice the iPhone maker’s objections to EU draft guidelines that could allow customers to install software from outside its App Store.
Apple contends that such a move would make phones the target of malware or hijacking by cybercriminals and the company is sending top executives to Europe to garner public support and show its resolve in stopping the proposal becoming law.
Apple calls such unofficial app installations “side-loading”. Such a function is already available on Android phones that make up a majority of devices around the world. Apple warned of malicious apps infecting shopper gadgets and made doomsday predictions.
“Sideloading is a cybercriminal’s best friend,” Federighi pressed the case on stage, addressing thousands of attendees at Europe’s largest technology conference.
One compromised device could overflow into entire networks, and malware could jeopardize government systems, enterprise networks and public utilities, he said.
The draft rules need a green light from EU lawmakers and EU countries before they become law, likely https://www.reuters.com/technology/apple-warns-cybercrime-risks-if-eu-forces-it-allow-others-software-2021-10-13 in 2023.
Apple charges commissions of up to 30% for purchases made within the App Store and loosening its grip on it might allow developers to avoid paying those commissions.
“The discussion about sideloading is just a sideshow, which is really designed to deflect the conversation away from the things that Apple is doing that are clearly anticompetitive,” Spotify Chief Legal Officer Horacio Gutierrez said in an interview.
(Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee and Clara-Laeila Laudette in Lisbon; Additional reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)