macOS may soon stop users from sideloading iOS apps on M1 Macs

Macbook M1 Ios Apps
Macbook M1 Ios Apps (Image credit: Daniel Bader / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Sideloading iOS apps on an Apple Silicon Mac may be stopped by Apple.
  • Code in the macOS Big Sur 11.2 beta 2 talks about blocking a user's ability to do so.

As reported by 9to5Mac, the latest betas for iOS and macOS might kill the ability for users to sideload iOS on their Apple Silicon Macs.

Based on internal code that is shared between recent iOS 14.4 beta versions and macOS Big Sur 11.2, Apple is implementing a new system that will block some iOS apps from running on the Mac. This, of course, will not affect the apps available on the Mac App Store.

According to the outlet, code found in the beta reveals that, if the developer does not make its iOS available on the Mac App Store, it will not be able to be manually installed on the Mac.

The code found by 9to5Mac is related to the APIs that manage the DRM (Digital Rights Management) protections of the operating system. We can't confirm if this lock is already working on macOS Big Sur 11.2 beta 2, but it may also be something that Apple will enable remotely once the update is available for users.

Below is the message found within macOS Big Sur 11.2 beta 2:

This application cannot be installed because the developer did not intend for it to run on this platform.

While the warning exists, 9to5Mac reports that they were still able to sideload apps on an M1 Mac. It is unclear if that will still be the case once macOS Big Sur 11.2 rolls out to the public.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.