Info-tech

Apple may allow third-party apps as default web browsers on iPhones

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on February 21, 2020 Published on February 21, 2020

File photo   -  Mike Segar

Currently, iPhone users do not have the option of changing the default iOS applications

Apple is planning to roll out an update that will enable iPhone users to set third-party apps as default web browsers and email clients, reported Bloomberg.

The report disclosed that the company is also working on allowing third-party music services like Spotify to be played directly on its HomePod smart speaker. After this change, the iPhone users don’t have to stream the music from an Apple device over AirPlay.

The report added that the plan is still underway, and users can expect changes by the end of the year in iOS 14, and in an update to the HomePod’s firmware.

Currently, iPhone users do not have the option of changing the default iOS applications. If a user clicks on a link, Safari opens exclusively.

Why the new update?

The tech giant is facing antitrust scrutiny over how it manages its platforms.

According to media reports, Spotify moved the European Union last year, complaining that Apple unfairly pushes its users to use its own music streaming service. EU had prepared to launch an antitrust investigation against Apple.

Meanwhile, in the US, Bluetooth tracking company Tile also filed a petition against Apple, mentioning that Apple unfairly undercut potential competitors on its platform.

The Bloomberg also reported that Apple is preparing to allow its Siri voice assistant to send messages via third-party messaging apps by default. Users do not have to specifically mention them in a voice command.

Apple may extend this service to phone calls as well.

Currently, Apple ships around 38 apps with iPhones and iPads. According to Bloomberg, these will gain a significant advantage by being set as the device’s default software installed on hundreds of millions of iOS and iPadOS devices.

Apple, in its statement, maintained that it included 38 apps to give its users a “great experience right out of the box” and added that there are “many successful competitors” to its own apps.

Published on February 21, 2020
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