These Are the Countries Where You Can Install Apps Outside of the iOS App Store

Apple today completely overhauled its app system, introducing changes that allow developers to distribute their apps through alternative app stores and use alternative methods of payment in iOS 17.4. Unfortunately, these changes are limited to countries that are in the European Union, and they won't be implemented worldwide.

App Store vs EU Feature 2
There are 27 EU countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.

Options to install apps through alternative app stores will only be available in the countries listed above, and elsewhere in the world, there will be no changes to how apps are installed and distributed.

Apple said that it is limiting these changes to the EU because the company is concerned about how alternative app stores and payment methods will impact user privacy and security. Apple claims that users are now at risk for being exposed to malware, illicit and questionable app content, pirated software, scams, and fraud.

The updates to the iOS app ecosystem were mandated by Europe's Digital Markets Act, which Apple must comply with by March 6, 2024. If Apple did not change its app rules, it could have faced significant fines levied by the European Commission.

Given Apple's concerns over user privacy and security, the company is unlikely to implement similar changes worldwide without being forced to by similar legislation from other countries. Note that these features are tied to the iOS 17.4 beta that was released today. Apple plans to release iOS 17.4 in March.

Top Rated Comments

MrGimper Avatar
4 weeks ago
Thanks Brexit ??
Score: 47 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thays133 Avatar
4 weeks ago

Apple said that it is limiting these changes to the EU because the company is concerned about how alternative app stores and payment methods will impact user privacy and security. Apple claims that users are now at risk for being exposed to malware, illicit and questionable app content, pirated software, scams, and fraud.

That is a complete and utter lie and everyone knows it.
Lets be honest on the real reason. It means less money for Apple.
Just admit the truth Apple the real reason is about greed. I will call you greedy for it but I can at least respect you being honest. Right now it is just Apple being greedy and a complete liar.
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RemedyRabbit Avatar
4 weeks ago
The amount of pearl clutching around this is kinda hilarious, some people have bought into Apple's PR line really hard. All this does is move iOS towards (and not even all the way) being as open as macOS, Windows, Linux etc. It's great news for users and developers, everyone outside the EU should be demanding it too otherwise before long the capability of their devices will be falling behind. Anyone really concerned about security can stay in the walled garden if they wish. Getting mad about it makes no sense whatsoever.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
stocklen Avatar
4 weeks ago

Thanks Brexit ??
Thanks Brexit!!

Who asked for this rubbish.... Id rather keep my phone secure thanks.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
hans1972 Avatar
4 weeks ago
I'm so happy Norway isn't included! I thought we would be included because of the EEC-agreement.

Fortunately the might of the Kingdom of Norway, the Republic of Iceland and the Principality of Liechtenstein saved us once again.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dave245 Avatar
4 weeks ago
Finally one perk of Brexit, I'm not for this at all. Apple shouldn't be forced to open up their App Store or any of their software.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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