Japan Preparing EU-Style Law to Force Apple to Allow App Sideloading and More

Japan is preparing antitrust legislation to force Apple to allow app sideloading and alternative payment methods for in-app purchases, Nikkei Asia reports.

iOS App Store General Feature Desaturated
The plans by Japan's Fair Trade Commission focus on combating Apple and Google's dominance in app stores and payments, search, browsers, and operating systems. The regulation could encompass a wide range of changes to Apple's practices, such as an obligation to allow users to utilize alternative app stores, effectively allowing sideloading on iPhones and iPads in Japan.

The regulation also looks to impose fines for violations of the rules amounting to around six percent of revenue earned from "problematic activities." The Fair Trade Commission's work on the legislation is ongoing, with plans to finalize it in the spring. The legislation will have to be approved by parliament in 2024 before coming into effect.

Japan's proposed regulation bears a strong resemblance to the European Union's Digital Markets Act (DMA), which is set to force Apple to enable app sideloading in the EU by March 2024 among other significant changes.

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Top Rated Comments

Skyscraperfan Avatar
22 weeks ago

So the EU and Japan will also force their manufacturing companies to share their tech to enable anyone to do whatever they want to their products and maintain warranty over it?
Yes, because warranty is a right of the customer. In the past some parties even denied warranty if you attached a third party Ethernet cable to their devices. Notebook manufactures denied warranty if someone opened the notebook to add more RAM. I am glad those days are over.
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Skyscraperfan Avatar
22 weeks ago

Once again governments thinking that they can tell people and companies what to do, this will not end well, and will not benefit anybody in the long-run.

If you don't like Apple's business model, quite simply - go else where...

As soon as people realize that the government is there to represent the people, not control the people - the world will become a better place...
Governments have to act in the interest of the customers. How can it be in the interest of the customers that Apple decides which apps they can install and gets a 30% share of every purchase? In the US consumer rights are pretty much non-existent, but that might change.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gpat Avatar
22 weeks ago
As a lifetime Android user, I'm somewhat baffled by these mandates.
I've always voted with my wallet, but never thought that Apple had to be forced to add missing features to iOS.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
steve09090 Avatar
22 weeks ago
No problem with side loading but it should void any reliance of Apple to fix it when something goes wrong. And it will.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
steve09090 Avatar
22 weeks ago

Yes, because warranty is a right of the customer. In the past some parties even denied warranty if you attached a third party Ethernet cable to their devices. Notebook manufactures denied warranty if someone opened the notebook to add more RAM. I am glad those days are over.
So, for example, you buy a Honda. You replace the operating system with one you 'prefer' and Honda should honour the warranty. Right…
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Skyscraperfan Avatar
22 weeks ago

So, for example, you buy a Honda. You replace the operating system with one you 'prefer' and Honda should honour the warranty. Right…
Yes, unless they can prove that your changes caused the problems.

No, not customers - they have to represent the people...

It's in the interest of the customers, as this will enable a business to be able to fully provide a service to the end users - providing support for a product - who knows what will happen if anonymous apps are allowed to be deployed - this opens up so many security concerns, such as the ability to eavesdrop (something we see constantly on Android).

I suspect that this is the real reason behind why the EU and Japan are looking at this, as it would allow them the ability to load in an app that would allow them to track and monitor anybody using the device - we know how the EU are already trying to block end-to-end encryption, and also iCloud Relay - they hate not knowing what people are doing.
Strange that sideloading has never been a problem with a Mac. Shouldn't Macs be full of viruses, if your theory is true?

And Apple of course will still allow you to block any app from getting any information you do not want it to get. Your location, your images, microphone access and so on.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)