Apple CEO Tim Cook vehemently explained that iPhones will never let users sideload apps to the device. Sideloading is a big part of how the Android ecosystem opens its gates to developers from all corners, and allow multiple app store content to be published/installed on smartphones.
iPhones have been resistive to such practices, and Cook says that the company believes sideloading of apps puts user’s data and privacy at risk.
He also mentioned that sideloading apps reduces the effectiveness of the App Store security, which can be used by third-party actors to circumvent the device for their mischievous acts.
“That means data-hungry companies would be able to avoid our privacy rules and once again track our users against their will. It would also potentially give bad actors a way around the comprehensive security protections we have put in place, putting them in direct contact with our users,” Cook said on the sidelines of the Global Privacy Summit that is taking place in Washington DC this week.
He even mentioned that vetting of apps before publishing on the App Store is a crucial way of keeping the device and its data secure. And allowing apps to be installed without any checks can be detrimental, not only for the user but also for iPhones as a hardware ecosystem.
While Cook’s pitch against sideloading has merits, his reasoning for the lack of support on iPhone isn’t very convincing. Privacy is a big plus for the iPhone users, but this comparison is becoming rather too mundane. Apple can surely find a way to fix the loopholes that exist with sideloading of apps, and give the world a better functioning system that leads as an example for the industry.
Apple’s close garden ecosystem has been lauded for years, but the anti-competition maneuvers are becoming hard to ignore.
And the authorities are clearly looking to change the trend, something that Apple is not keen on signing up for today, or ever.