Some iOS 18 features won’t appear in the EU this year due to Digital Markets Act law

Some time ago, Apple presented their new software updates for the fall with quite a few new iOS 18 features. Unfortunately, there is now bad news to report for users living in the European Union. Some features will not appear immediately in the EU due to Digital Markets Act law.

Apple has to Financial Times announced that three new iOS 18, iPadOS 18 and macOS Sequoia features will not be released in the EU this year. It is about this iPhone Mirroring, SharePlay Screen Sharing (remotely control iPhone or iPad) and Apple Intelligence. We explain what is going on.

iOS 18 features limited in EU

Naturally, as a consumer you want to try out and use all the new features as quickly as possible. It is not new that Apple imposes restrictions on certain features, usually these are hardware limitations (newer device required) or a feature is only suitable in certain languages. Unfortunately, there is now a new limitation: the EU.

Apple has to Financial Times announced that three new iOS 18, iPadOS 18 and macOS Sequoia features will not be released in the EU this year. The reason for this could be the Digital Markets Act.

Digital Markets Act briefly explained

The Digital Markets Act (DMA) is a European law that regulates large online platforms and companies, known as gatekeepers, to promote fair competition. The law targets companies that have a significant influence on the internal market and imposes specific obligations on them, such as preventing unfair practices such as favoring their own products or services.

In addition, these gatekeepers must be more transparent and offer third parties equal access to their platforms and data. The aim of the DMA is to stimulate innovation and freedom of choice for consumers by limiting the market dominance of these large platforms. Through this regulation, the European Union wants to create a level playing field for all digital companies. For that reason, Apple has allowed sideloading of apps and iOS 18 will also support RCS in messages.

Functions limited by DMA

Apple indicates that there are three features in iOS 18, iPadOS 18 and macOS Sequoia that could be affected by DMA. We list them below:

  • iPhone Mirroring: Show your iPhone’s screen on your Mac to use it, fully control it and receive iPhone notifications.
  • SharePlay Screen Sharing: This feature allows you to start a shareplay session via FaceTime and gives you the ability to not only display the screen of your iPhone or iPad, you can also control it remotely if desired.
  • Apple Intelligence: A personal intelligence system for Mac, iPhone and iPad that combines the power of generative models with the user’s individual context, resulting in AI that is both useful and relevant.
iPhone Mirroring mac macOS

It is not yet clear how these features could violate the Digital Markets Act, but Apple indicates that this law would weaken the integrity of the products. At the moment we have to wait and see and Apple is investigating whether they can bring the functions to the EU as soon as possible, but that may not be until next year.

Country restrictions

Since the introduction of sideloading, Apple can now block parts of the software based on location. This means that alternative app stores can only be installed and used in the EU and not outside of it. There is a good chance that the aforementioned function will not work, even if you use a VPN or adjust the language and/or region of your Apple product.

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