The main thing is that they are well regulated: Apple released its new operating systems for the iPhone and iPad with the code number 17.4 on Tuesday.

The most important change is probably due to European regulation and the Digital Markets Act: Within the EU (and only there) users can install alternative app stores for the iPhone.

Michael Spehr

Editor in the “Technology and Engine” department.

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    This should ensure more competition.

    However, IT experts and critics of EU regulation fear that this will make it easier for malware to get onto the iPhone.

    Reference is made to the Android world, which is particularly vulnerable in this regard.

    There will be no sideloading

    However, Apple has built some protective barriers for greater security in the implementation of the EU directive.

    “Sideloading”, i.e. the manual loading of apps, for example via a website, which is particularly dangerous in the Android world, will no longer exist in the iPhone world in the future.

    Apps made available through alternative stores are checked by Apple, including searching for malware and validating basic functionality.

    In addition, every app receives a digital certificate so that the app can be withdrawn if it turns out to be harmful.

    The first alternative app stores will go into operation in the next few days.

    Experts advise against them and assume that they are rarely used.

    According to a survey among listeners of the leading podcast “Apfelfunk” in German-speaking countries, only six percent want to try a different app store.

    Siri doesn't say Hey

    There is also new freedom of choice when it comes to internet browsers.

    Now you can not only freely choose the app, as before, but also the associated support structure from the developers.

    When you open it for the first time after the update, there is a selection dialog that points to other browsers.

    The EU's view of humanity does not allow users to choose the browser they like best.

    From iOS 17.4 onwards, bank apps and payment services can access the NFC interface for the first time in order to process contactless payments.

    By the way, iPad OS 17.4 remains unaffected by the new EU regulations.

    The new features of the operating system 17.4 include a small change to the voice assistant Siri.

    It can now be started simply by calling “Siri” without the previous “Hey”.

    Anyone who uses Apple's podcast app can have an automatically created transcript displayed.

    Not all podcasters like that.

    The battery menu of the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro has received new entries, namely information about the number of charging cycles and the production date of the device.

    The first use is also documented.