The EU may force Apple to allow users to uninstall the Photos app

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The EU may force Apple to allow users to uninstall the Photos app

If the European Union (EU) gets its way, Apple could be in for a major overhaul. The block requires Apple to comply with the Digital Markets Act (DMA), which promotes a more open and competitive app ecosystem.

EU demands removal of photo app raising security concerns

At the center of the dispute is Apple’s Photos app. According to a report by Daring Fireball’s John Gruber, European Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager emphasized that Apple should allow users to uninstall any application, including system-level applications such as Photos.

This requirement has been controversial because the Photos app is deeply integrated with iOS, providing access control to other apps and acting as a camera. It also interacts with iCloud to store and share data.

Vestager believes that Apple should allow third-party applications to act as the system image library. However, experts such as Gruber point out the complexity of such a change, which could potentially require a major iOS update.

Apple has made some changes to comply with the DMA, for example, by offering alternative app store options. However, the European Commission (EC) believes that this is not enough. They are particularly concerned about Apple’s “anti-gatekeeping” measures and fees associated with alternative app stores.

Although Vestager’s comments specifically mention the Photos app, it is unclear whether the EC will strictly enforce this rule. Some argue that the ability to remove the Photos app could create more problems than it’s worth, as it could potentially lead to accidental data loss.

The EU has also expressed dissatisfaction with Apple’s current browser choice screen implemented to comply with the DMA. Vestager suggests that it does not provide users with a fully informed decision. This may be due to the fact that the randomized list shows only the 11 most downloaded browsers alongside Safari.

The dispute between the EU and Apple over DMA compliance is likely to continue. While the EU is pushing for a more open ecosystem, concerns remain about the potential impact on user experience and data security.

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