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As it faces a barrage of probes and investigations regarding the App Store and the distribution of apps on its devices, Apple has told Australia's consumer watchdog that developers have "multiple" ways to reach iOS users and claims that they are "far from limited" to simply using the App Store.

appstore.jpg

In a new filing (via ZDnet) responding to concerns from the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission that it exploits "alleged market power in its role as a distributor of apps," Apple highlights multiple avenues that developers can take to reach customers.

Specifically, Apple points out that the "whole web" exists as an alternative means of distribution, arguing that the web has become a platform unto itself. Apple supports this claim by noting that iOS devices have "unrestricted and uncontrolled" access to the web, allowing users to download web apps.
Even if a user only owns iOS-based devices, distribution is far from limited to the Apple App Store because developers have multiple alternative channels to reach that user. The whole web is available to them, and iOS devices have unrestricted and uncontrolled access to it. One common approach is for users to purchase and consume digital content or services on a website.

Web browsers are used not only as a distribution portal but also as platforms themselves, hosting "progressive web applications" (PWAs) that eliminate the need to download a developer's app through the App Store (or other means) at all. PWAs are increasingly available for and through mobile-based browsers and devices, including on iOS.
Apple says that the alternative methods of distribution, such as web apps and developers' websites, pose a competitive threat to the App Store. Apple goes on to discuss other platforms, such as the Google Play Store, noting that it fights "vigorously" to attract developers to make apps for its platform instead of others.
As explained further below, Apple faces competitive constraints from distribution alternatives within the iOS ecosystem (including developer websites and other outlets through which consumers may obtain third-party apps and use them on their iOS devices) and outside iOS.

Indeed, Apple competes vigorously to attract the best developers because a reduction in the quality of apps, or restricted availability of popular apps in the App Store, would diminish the user experience. Any action undermining the popularity of the App Store — including impeding developers from being successful on the App Store — would be economically irrational, as this would destroy the value of the ecosystem to the detriment of consumers, app developers, and Apple itself.
Apple's new comments are unlikely to sit well with some developers, particularly Epic Games, which is pursuing a massive legal battle against Apple over being an alleged monopoly. Some developers claim that Apple holds a dominant position on its devices because of the App Store, and exploits its power to limit innovation and competition.

Just this week, in a separate filing to the ACCC, Apple said it was "surprised" to hear that some developers have concerns about the review process and the guidelines that apps must follow before appearing on the App Store. The ACCC launched its App Store investigation last year and is expected to release an interim report on March 31.

Article Link: Apple Says iOS Developers Have 'Multiple' Ways of Reaching Users and Are 'Far From Limited' to Using Only the App Store
 
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AppleTO

macrumors 6502
Oct 31, 2018
400
784
Toronto, Canada
Lies, lies, lies... :apple: once i fully paid for my device, i should be able to side load the software i purchase separately. Glad this is finally in court.

By buying an iPhone you own the hardware but only license iOS to use it as is.

You could side load whatever OS you would like onto the hardware, to run whatever apps you would like.

If you disagree with Apple’s licensing so much, why not just go use another device with a different OS?
 

GenesisST

macrumors 68000
Jan 23, 2006
1,767
890
Where I live
Sooner or later, Apple will be forced by a court or country to allow browser downloads on iOS like on the mac. It is just more of a question of when instead of if.

Isn't this already supported? I downloaded a firmware update for my router and it was put in "Files". I haven't tried actually doing the update from safari, though. When I have time to lose if it fails badly, I will try it.
 
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acidblood

macrumors regular
Oct 6, 2006
119
247
By buying an iPhone you own the hardware but only license iOS to use it as is.

You could side load whatever OS you would like onto the hardware, to run whatever apps you would like.

If you disagree with Apple’s licensing so much, why not just go use another device with a different OS?
Excellent.

How do you sideload another OS into an iPhone again?

Is there some phone number I can call to ask “Hey Apple, will you digitally sign this Loonix OS image or whatever so I can sideload it into my iPhone”?
 

rjp1

macrumors 6502a
Mar 27, 2015
500
1,596
You do not own the operating system, if you want to install your own OS, feel free. Otherwise, live with Apple’s restrictions or do not buy into the ecosystem.
This makes no sense. The boot loader will only load a binary that is signed by Apple. They stop signing old version of iOS, and you think they are going to let any other OS boot on our devices?
 

Nuno Lopes

macrumors 65816
Sep 6, 2011
1,041
871
Lisbon, Portugal
Web browsers are used not only as a distribution portal but also as platforms themselves, hosting "progressive web applications" (PWAs) that eliminate the need to download a developer's app through the App Store (or other means) at all. PWAs are increasingly available for and through mobile-based browsers and devices, including on iOS.

This is a lie. PWA in iOS basically limited to a link in the Home Screen opening a web page on the Internet without Safari controls.

So in practice one can’t install web apps in iOS. Apple tech to support PWA installs is really feature poor not to mention non standard. Safari approach to the support of PWAs is like IE support was more than a decade ago regarding the web when MS aim was to funnel the web tech into into the Windows OS ... it was stopped from being able to do so by regulators. By assuring that in Windows people could install alternative Browser / Engines by default leading to more innovation than IE could keep up. IE, a cancer that even today has impact in LOB apps.

For instance in iOS, PWAs cannot rise notifications like apps do, local cache is very limited, opening a we page in Safari does not direct to the PWA installed and many other things that other browsers/OSs support. Default apps ... None to do with security. The reason I guess its because if they did supported as it could and should be done, as SJ initially thought it should be done, many many apps would be out of the App Store.

The difference between Safari PWA support and Native apps on iOS is the same has between paying to watch a movie in a big screen or trough a tightly controlled key hole. Yes, you have options, but in highly competitive market like digital services, servicing customers trough a key hole is not much of a viable option.
 
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I7guy

macrumors Penryn
Nov 30, 2013
29,126
17,433
Gotta be in it to win it
This makes no sense. The boot loader will only load a binary that is signed by Apple. They stop signing old version of iOS, and you think they are going to let any other OS boot on our devices?
His point was, there are all sorts of creative ways of hacking electronic devices and Apple is not obligated to help you. But if you want to buy an iphone and use ios, you are bound to the t&c and the way the entire ecosystem operates. If "one" (not necessarily you) doesn't like that, there are alternatives.
 

DaPizzaMan

macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2016
368
532
That is more likely to be Netflix due to whatever DRM they want to use not being supported, but yes you are correct in that you cannot play directly from the Netflix website.
Where does the support for the DRM they use come from? Is it not from the browser/engine itself (iOS Webkit?)? In which case, wouldn't that be Apple's own restriction.
 
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