Apple in iOS 17.4 will begin allowing apps in the European Union to be distributed through alternative app stores rather than the iOS App Store, but the Cupertino company warns that this means certain features users have come to rely on will not work as they do for standard App Store apps.
Restrictions on In-App Purchases in Screen Time will not be available, for example, nor will Family Purchase Sharing for apps and subscriptions that are made outside of the App Store. Ask to Buy is not a supported feature, and universal purchase, a feature that allows apps to work across all of a user’s devices, is not offered.
Apple will not be able to offer these features because it will not be facilitating purchases of apps distributed through alternative app stores.
Screen Time, parental controls, and Spotlight will continue to function, according to Apple, but parents will need to adjust to not having access to purchasing restrictions for apps installed outside of the App Store.
Apple also warns that it will not be able to assist users with refunds, purchase history, subscription management and cancelation, violations of user data privacy, abuse, or fraud and manipulations.
Developers or the alternative app marketplace an app was downloaded from will need to handle issues like refunds and subscription cancelations. iPhone and iPad users will be able to choose not to install apps outside of the App Store, of course, and these changes are limited to users in the European Union.
Related Roundups: iOS 17, iPadOS 17Related Forums: iOS 17, iPadOS 17
This article, “Apple Warns That Some Screen Time and Sharing Features Won’t Work With Alternative App Distribution in the EU” first appeared on MacRumors.com
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