App Store to Be ‘Split in Two’ Ahead of EU iPhone Sideloading Deadline

Apple is preparing to split the App Store “in two” in the coming weeks ahead of European Union requirements that will force Apple to enable app sideloading in the region, Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman reports.

In the latest edition of his “Power On” newsletter, Gurman explained that Apple is gearing up to make changes to the ‌App Store‌ in the EU to comply with the region’s impending Digital Markets Act (DMA). Apple is apparently planning to roll out adjustments to comply with the new legal requirements in the coming weeks, including splitting off the ‌App Store‌ in the EU from the rest of the world. The deadline for Apple to comply with the DMA is March 7, so the company has just over seven weeks to enact the changes.

Last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook met the European Union’s antitrust chief, Margrethe Vestager, at Apple Park. Vestager reminded Cook of Apple’s impending obligation to allow users to install third-party app stores and sideload apps under the DMA. Apple will also be obliged to give developers the ability to promote their offers outside the ‌‌‌‌App Store‌‌‌‌ and use third-party payment systems. The DMA is expected to force Apple to make a range of significant changes to the way the ‌App Store‌, FaceTime, and Siri work in Europe.

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