Apple to Allow External iOS Apps; Potential Win for Crypto and NFTs

The Cupertino-based tech firm will allow users to install iOS apps from external sources to comply with EU regulations.

Dec 15, 2022
by Akira Ming
Apple to Allow External iOS Apps; Potential Win for Crypto and NFTs
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European legal push is forcing Apple to support external iOS apps

According to Bloomberg, Apple is planning to allow the installation of iOS apps from external sources due to EU regulations. Citing people familiar with the matter, the report claims that the tech giant will support apps from third-party sources and marketplaces - a move that could benefit the Web3 space.  

These changes are made in response to the European Union's Digital Markets Act, which requires tech firms to fully comply by 2024. While its efforts will only begin in Europe initially, Apple may eventually extend the functionality to regions that adopt similar regulations. 

All the while, Apple's walled garden ecosystem has caused much trouble and frustration among Web3 users and creators. The Cupertino-based tech firm earlier announced that it would allow in-app NFT sales with each subject to a 30% tax. 

Coinbase later had to disable NFT transfers through its mobile wallet app, as Apple said that users must pay a 30% fee for each of these actions. That was the last straw for many leading Web3 firms, with MetaMask wallet creator Dan Finlay saying that the industry should just abandon App Store due to its massive tax on in-app purchases.

But if Apple were to open up its ecosystem, it would be a big win for Web3 apps limited by App Store policies. According to Bloomberg, the company's "software engineering and services employees are engaged in a major push to open up key elements of Apple's platforms." This could allow users to install NFT and crypto apps via external sources, potentially bypassing Apple's in-app sales requirements. However, extra security rules may apply to these apps, according to the report. 

It remains to be seen if Apple will eventually support outside apps or marketplaces as reported. As of writing, it's safe to say that many crypto fans are unhappy with how it handles Web3 apps in its ecosystem thus far.

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