iOS 17.4 seems to remove web app support in the EU | Technology

Safari Web Apps Webkit.jpg

Apple recently released iOS 17.4 beta to comply with the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) antitrust legislation, which forced the company to allow alternative app stores on the iPhone. The update also brings some changes related to web browsers – and some bad news too. Users in the EU who have installed the beta have noticed that they can no longer install and run web apps on their iPhone.

Web apps no longer work for iPhone users in the EU

From the very beginning, Apple has allowed users to add websites to the iPhone Home Screen, so that they can be used as web apps. Over the last few years, Apple has added many features to improve support for web apps. For example, iOS 16.4 allowed PWAs to deliver push notifications with icon badges.

But all those improvements seem to have gone now – at least for those in Europe. As noted by developer Maximiliano Firtman, iOS 17.4 beta removes support for progressive web apps (PWA) from the system for users located in the EU.

At first, Firtman believed that PWAs weren’t working in the iOS 17.4 beta due to a bug. However, with the release of iOS 17.4 beta 2 earlier this week, the system now shows an alert telling users that web apps “will open from your default browser from now on.” And although you can still add websites to the iPhone Home Screen, they simply open in the user’s default web browser.

This has a lot of consequences for users. For example, all data stored by these web apps is automatically deleted with the update. Websites can also no longer send push notifications to users.

iOS 17.4 and the DMA

Apple is yet to comment on these changes, but they seem to be…

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