Apple refuses to notarize emulator apps – Six Colors

This apparently happened just before WWDC, so I missed it, but it deserves everyone’s attention. Apple has rejected the UTM emulator app, not just from the global App Store, but from all third-party App Stores in the EU by refusing to notarize it. Michael Tsai’s site has the details:

This also seems inconsistent with the fact that the Delta emulator is allowed to be notarized outside the App Store. It doesn’t make much sense for the rules to be more lax within the App Store.

Steve Troughton-Smith put it more succinctly:

Apple needs to read the terms of the DMA again; Apple can’t reject UTM from distribution in third party marketplaces, in just the same way it can’t prevent Epic from building an App Store. App Review is going to land them yet another clash with the EU, and potential fine-worthy rule violation.

In other words, parts of Apple apparently think that they can enforce inconsistent and arbitrary rules even outside the App Store, which is contrary to the entire regulatory process that led to the DMA and the concept of alternative App Stores in the first place. (This also happened to the iDOS emulator.)

On top of all that, it took Apple two months to come to the decision. (AltStore developer Riley Testut has said that Apple is taking ages to notarize any apps for his marketplace.)

The whole point of the DMA is that Apple does not get to act as an arbitrary approver or disapprover of apps. If Apple can still reject or approve apps as it sees fit, what’s the point of the DMA in the first place?

[Hat tip to ATP 592.]

—Linked by Jason Snell

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