Privacy: India Sets To Ban Use of iPhones In The Country

Pappi Hex

One major problem phone and software makers face is how to operate or sell their services in different countries and still manage to operate within the law or jurisdiction of each those countries. Apple is facing a similar problem in India where it faces the risk of being banned completely from the country for refusing to comply with directives from the country's telecom regulatory body.

The Telecom Regulatory authority of India (TRAI) has instructed  network operators in India to shut down support for phones that do not support installing its Do Not Disturb (DND) app.

The Do Not Disturb app is an anti-spam app that blocks nuisance calls in India i.e prevent unwanted telemarketing texts or calls. The app is available on the Google Play Store for Android users to download. However, apple didn't allow the app onto the App Store claiming that it "violates the privacy policy."

The Cupertino company's refusal to allow the Do Not Disturb onto Apple Store over privacy concerns led to a tiff with TRAI which made the regulatory body to come up with this stringent rule.

According to India Today, the part of the regulation reads, "Every access provider shall ensure, within six months' time, that all smart phone devices registered on its network support the permissions required for the functioning of such apps. Provided that where such devices do not permit functioning of such apps, Access Providers shall, on the order or direction of the Authority derecognize such devices from their own telecom networks."

Apple has informed TRAI of the changes in iOS 12 software upgrade which is to be available in September 2018. The software upgrade has features that allow bocking of unwanted calls and messages on iPhones.

Also read: Gang Of Hooded Thieves Snatch 21 iPhones Worth $19,000 From New York Apple Display Store

According to Apple, the iOS 12 update will feature Unwanted Communication extension. This feature will allow iPhone users to report spam calls and text messages right from the call log or messages app to TRAI. However, the Unwanted Communication extension doesn't provide TRAI's DND app with access to the entire cal log or SMS inbox of the user which is precisely what TRAI wants, full access to users call logs and messages.

This new regulation from TRAI has also been criticised by other phone makers saying the TRAI does not have the power to force telecom operators to stop registering certain phones on their network.

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