The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee last Thursday considered and passed the “Open Market Act” (reminder: the bill is not a law). The bill will significantly affect companies such as Apple and Google. This bill will prohibit sideloading restrictions on app stores, Apple will be seriously hit here. Also, it will prohibit major app stores from mandating app developers to use their payment systems. This will affect both Apple and Google.
Many smartphone users believe that this is a “people’s bill” because it gives users more options. Also, the two bills in the United States are of great significance in protecting small and medium-sized enterprises. It ensures that consumers have a fair choice and restores competition in the digital market.
In this regard, Apple once again voiced its opposition to open sideloading. The company continues to insist that sideloading will lead to widespread fraud and data exploitation. Tim Powderly, Apple’s head of government affairs for the Americas, sent committee members a letter repeatedly emphasizing the dangers of open sideloading.
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“App sideloading will enable bad actors to evade Apple’s privacy and security protections by distributing apps without critical privacy and security checks,” Powderly said. “These regulations will allow malware, scams, and data exploitation to flourish.”
Bill will not become law anytime soon
The bill requires iOS to allow users to sideload and install applications from alternative app stores. Since Google already permits sideloading, this will affect Apple far more than it will affect Google
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman said:
Influential lawmakers including Senators Amy Klobuchar, Richard Blumenthal and Chuck Grassley are pushing bills in Congress. If these bills passes into law, they could cost Apple billions of dollars a year and upend the App Store. But despite the threats these bills pose, they appear unlikely to become law anytime soon. In other words, Apple may still be able to win big in US courts and thus not be forced to make any major changes to the App Store — at least in the short term…In order for Congress to pass these bills into law, a sweeping sweep will be required on several levels, which is unlikely to happen.
Apple is quite powerful in the U.S. and thus it has both the finance and personnel to fight this. However, the company is currently jittery over the plans by U.S. lawmakers. While many hope that this bill passes, the hurdles it has to cross are still numerous.