Apple software head Craig Federighi, unsurprisingly, has come out against Europe’s proposal to tear down Apple’s iOS walled-garden and allow sideloading of apps, which is possible on Android but discouraged by Google.
Why? Malware, according to Federighi, who used his speech to the Web Summit conference in Lisbon, Portugal, about online privacy to contrast Android’s malware problem with that of Apple’s iOS.
He highlighted that third-party data on malware attacks on different platforms including iOS, Android and Windows showed that attacks on iOS “barely registered”.
By contrast, there were five million attacks on Android per month. “But there’s never been this widespread consumer malware attack on iOS. Never.” the Apple exec said.
“Why is this? The single biggest difference is that other platforms allow side loading. Sideloading would mean downloading software directly from the open internet or from third-party stores, bypassing the protections from the App Store.
“With side loading those extra protections are undone. There’s no human app review and no single point of distribution for side loaded apps. The floodgates are open for malware.”
Apple is facing a mounting challenge in Europe, the US, Asia and Australia over its control over app distribution – it is by design a gatekeeper in terms of the apps