Apple may not have to worry much longer to be forced to list Crimea as part of Russia, as a new law just passed in Russia could see Apple make a departure from the country entirely.
According to Reuters, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed legislation earlier this week requiring all app-enabled electronics sold in Russia to come with Russian software pre-installed. Of course, this would include smartphones and computers as well as devices such as smart TVs, tablets and laptops.
The new law, which is expected to come into force on July 1, 2020, is obviously a “confirmatory measure” intended to give Russian software developers a step up in competing with foreign companies such as Apple, Samsung and Huawei, as well as to make it easier for Russian consumers to start using their new devices directly without having to download Russian apps. However, some opponents of the law have expressed concern that it could also be used as a way to plant state spy programs on citizens’ units.
The new legislation is not only a requirement for the blanket that a certain percentage of Russian apps should be pre-installed but will actually include a list of specific Russian apps that must be included for the units to be sold in the country. The list of apps has not yet been created.
Equivalent to Jailbreaking
Electronics dealers in Russia have already criticized the new law, saying it was arbitrarily adopted without consultation, and although most tech companies have not yet commented on the legislation, a named source within Apple told Kommersant’s daily operations that such a law would “correspond to jailbreaking. ”
A mandate to add third-party applications to AppleEkosystem would be equivalent to jailbreaking. It would pose a security threat, and the company does not tolerate that type of risk.
Apple has previously threatened to withdraw from Russia altogether if such a law resulted in a complete ban on selling its products without pre-installing Russian apps, and this is an area where it seems highly likely that Apple would rather leave Russia than join adhere to such requirements that would change the basic nature of how it packages its products.
One of the things that made the iPhone unique from the beginning was that Apple showed no quarter in insisting that the iPhone experience be a pure set of first-party Apple applications, regardless of which operator an iPhone has purchased in, or which country it purchased in This remains in sharp contrast even today too many other smartphone manufacturers, where operator-specific apps are common.
An exit from Russia Apple would also resolve some of the latest controversies over disputed borders, where Apple was forced by Russian law to list the disputed territory in Crimea as part of Russia, even though the rest of the world sees things differently.
But in a move that some have called “regionalization of facts”, it is only on iPhones sold or operating in Russia that Crimea appears as part of Russian territory; outside Russia, Crimea remains listed as its own territory, as it was previously Apple capitulated to Russian claims. Of course, since Apple is only forced to write about geography on iPhones within Russian borders, simply leaving the country would make the whole question a good point.
In recent years, Russia has dropped its Internet laws and appears to take at least some of its clues from China’s highly repressive regime, which requires search engines to remove search results, insist that encryption keys for messaging services be shared with government agencies, and require social networks to store user data servers in the country.
Unlike China, but it is a market that Apple cannot afford to lose, both in terms of its iPhone customer base and manufacturing interests, Apple has much less at stake in Russia, so there is much less incentive for Apple to continue doing business in Russia, especially if the government begins to impose unrealistic demands on the iPhone manufacturer.
Edits and writes on every field except football. He has an obsessive relationship with business and technology trends, is sure to be the funniest to say sweet potato. Commercial content manager for TechAmbo.