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Apple faces probe for killing iPhone web apps in EU

by on27 February 2024

The price for being petulant

Apple could be in hot water over its decision to scrap iPhone web apps in the European Union, the Financial Times reports.

The European Commission has asked Apple and app makers for more information to help investigate, which is not a good sign.

European Commission spokesperson Lea Zuber said the Commission was looking at the rules of all gatekeepers, including Apple.

"We're especially looking into the issue of web apps and can confirm sending the requests for info to Apple and to app makers, who can give useful info for our check."

For those who came in late, Job’s Mob acted like a spoilt child when the EU told them it could not beat up web developers and steal their lunch money.  Earlier this month, Apple said it would stop supporting iPhone web apps in the EU in iOS 17.4. Instead of working as separate apps with storage and the ability to send alerts, web apps in the EU will work more like links.

Apple claimed this was because of the EU's Digital Markets Act (DMA), which allows Apple full support for other browsers — not just Safari's WebKit.

Apple claimed that adding web app support for other browsers would require the company to build "a whole new system," which it says "was impossible to do given the other demands of the DMA."

The company also says "very low user use" and possible security risks are reasons for the change.

Apple traditionally claims that anything it does not want to do poses a security risk when it usually means a financial risk.

App makers are fighting back on the end of web apps. Open Web Advocacy, a nonprofit group that supports the open web, is surveying to see how the change will affect makers. It plans on sending the answers to the European Commission.


Last modified on 27 February 2024
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