Limits currently in place on iOS regarding web browser renderers and NFC may well jump in the future, with Apple considering removing them, Bloomberg reveals. This follows the Digital Markets Act, namely a new regulation in Europe.
The “real” Chrome and Firefox on iOS?
Apple has always required Internet browsers like Chrome and Firefox to use WebKit, Safari’s rendering engine. In other words, all Internet browsers on iOS have exactly the same engine as Apple’s Safari. Firefox, Chrome and the others therefore have to rely on Apple’s work and cannot offer their own engine with improvements and various changes to (potentially) improve the user experience. Conversely, browsers on macOS do not have this limitation.
Apple therefore plans to take the necessary steps to allow other rendering engines on iOS. Thus, Google could offer the “real” Chrome, Mozilla could offer the real “Firefox”, etc. It is also to be wondered whether browsers will be able to approve the installation of extensions. Firefox on Android already offers this system for example, but this is not the case on iOS.
Apple also wants to open access to its private APIs so that developers can take advantage of them. Thus, NFC could be used by all the applications that want it with such or such use, which is impossible today on iOS.
Along with these changes, Apple is also reportedly discussing opening up its Find My network to third-party accessories. While manufacturers can already make their accessories compatible with the Find My network, competitors (like Tile) say there are still many disadvantages compared to Apple-specific accessories like AirTag.
As a reminder, Bloomberg also revealed that Apple will allow the installation of applications outside the App Store (sideloading) and third-party App Stores on the iPhone. This should be a reality in 2023 with iOS 17 (more information in this article). Apple also has no plans to support RCS.