According to Reuters, India is planning to force smartphone manufacturers such as Apple to allow the removal of pre-installed apps and mandate screening of operating system updates as part of proposed new security laws.
According to the new regulations, smartphone manufacturers must have an uninstall option for applications that come pre-installed on the device. According to persons familiar with the proposal, compliance testing of new models will be carried out in a laboratory to which the Bureau of Indian Standards agency has granted permission.
Apple already enables users to remove several of its apps from their devices. However, core applications such as Messages, Pictures, and Phones cannot be deleted; they may only be removed from the Home screen and buried in the App Library.
According to the individuals cited in the story, the Indian ministry of information technology is mulling over the restrictions in light of concerns regarding espionage and the misuse of user data, with explicit allusions made to the threat posed by China.
According to an official who requested anonymity, “pre-installed programs can be a weak security area, and we want to ensure that no foreign governments, particularly China, are exploiting it.” “The safety of the entire country depends on it.”
Following a conflict on its border with China in 2022, India has prohibited using more than 300 Chinese apps, including TikTok. It has also resulted in a greater emphasis on the inspection of investments made by Chinese companies.
Documents from the government that Reuters viewed indicate that representatives from Xiaomi, Samsung, Apple, and Vivo met behind closed doors to discuss the proposal.
It has been reported that the government will give manufacturers of smartphones a year to comply with the restrictions once they go into effect. Nevertheless, there are worries that they would cause subsequent smartphone launches to be delayed, which would result in financial losses for the company. The inspection process for a smartphone and its components by India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology takes roughly 21 weeks.
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