A whiff of grapeshot from Washington seems to have got Tim Cook’s attention.
From Mark Gurman’s “Apple Weighs Letting Users Switch Default iPhone Apps to Rivals” posted Thursday on Bloomberg News:
The technology giant is discussing whether to let users choose third-party web browser and mail applications as their default options on Apple’s mobile devices, replacing the company’s Safari browser and Mail app, according to people familiar with the matter.
Apple’s closed system to prohibit users from setting third-party apps as defaults was questioned last year during a hearing of a U.S. House of Representatives antitrust panel. Lawmakers pressed the issue of whether iPhone users can make non-Apple apps their defaults in categories including web browsers, maps, email and music.
The company currently pre-installs 38 default apps on iPhones and iPads, Bloomberg News has reported, including the Safari web browser, Maps, Messages and Mail.
My take: When the king commands such loyalty from his subjects, he can afford to loosen the rules a bit.