Sideloading is the most important feature of any SmartPhone
You heard me. Most important feature. By far.
I’ve spoken out, many times, about the strange war that companies like Apple and Google have been waging against “Sideloading”.
I’ve written serious articles about the issue. I’ve written satire mocking Apple’s undeniable fear of “Sideloading”. I’ve joined with the Free Software Foundation Europe in signing an open letter about it.
Now, let me be crystal clear: “Sideloading” is the most critical and valuable feature of any smartphone or computer. Period. Full stop.
What is “Sideloading”, you ask? Simple.
Sideloading is the act of installing software, whatever software you want, on a real computer (which includes pocket computers, like smartphones).
Seems simple and obvious, right? If you own a computer (or a smartphone), you should be able to install software on it.
Apple and Google both (strongly) disagree with that. While Google has allowed “sideloading” on Android since the beginning, they have recently begun taking steps to limit that in the future.
For several years, Apple has been on the attack against the concept of “Sideloading” — which is a term created entirely to vilify and demonize a simple task that all computers have been doing for decades — by making public statements against installing software outside of their tightly controlled App Store, and writing white papers about the dangers of “Sideloading”.
If Apple can prohibit installing software outside of their App Store (which is the current situation), they can limit what software you have access to… which limits which networks you have access to and who you can communicate with.
Want to use a messaging client, social media network, or video sharing site that Apple has decided — for any reason — you should not have access to? Tough. You’re out of luck.
Apple can control who you talk to and who you get news from.
This week alone, we have multiple examples of Apple suppressing the ability of people to communicate. And, in some cases, threatening to increasingly do so.
If “sideloading” were an easily usable feature of iOS, this would be far less of an issue.
Apple removes critical communication software from their App Store? That may be a hindrance… but if “sideloading” were easily doable you would still be free to choose to use that communication software. Like a grown up.
“Sideloading” is such an absolutely critical feature of any computing device… that any justification for restricting it — security, software quality, etc. — is immediately discountable as utterly ridiculous.
“Sideloading is evil and dangerous! If you sideload you might talk to someone we don’t like! You, an adult, might hurt yourself with that software you wanted to use!”
The only real reasons for Apple, Google, or any other operating system vendor to limit a users ability to install software… are nefarious ones. Restriction of what you say, what you read, who you talk to.
The Lunduke Journal does not like to get political. We, at The Lunduke Journal, love all nerds — of all political persuasions. But this is too important — and too nerdy — to not speak out on. The Lunduke Journal will always speak out in support of your ability to use your computers how you see fit.
Even if you want to do something as dastardly as “sideloading.”