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Apple plays ball with Indian government over anti-spam app

Apple plays ball with Indian government over anti-spam app

Apple will cooperate with the Indian government to develop an anti-spam mobile app for its iOS operating system.

The US-based vendor had previously objected to developing the Do Not Disturb app on the grounds that it did not comply with the App Store’s policies on privacy protection, prompting criticism from the Indian regulator TRAI. The app lets users to pass details from spam calls and text messages to their service providers, who can then in turn block the numbers.

Having held discussions over the app in New Delhi in October, Apple executives have agreed limited cooperation on the app. Apple mentioned that the government would benefit from certain iOS features aimed at tackling spam text messages, but did not touch on whether the iOS version of the app would be able to access call logs – a feature of the Android version.

Counterpoint Research analyst Neil Shah noted that Apple did not want to acquiesce to too many demands from the Indian government so as not to set a precedent for other markets, saying “This has now become more of an ego tussle between Apple and the regulator.”

However, the iPhone maker will be wary of ruffling feathers as it looks to bolster its Indian operations. In May, it set up its first Indian manufacturing plant for iPhone devices as it looks to gain a larger share of what has become the world’s second-largest smartphone market behind China.

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