Have you recently installed Apple Music on your iPhone, only to find that the app is automatically appearing on the device dock – knocking another app off the dock in the process?
If so, it’s a bug rather than a deliberate action by Apple to somehow put its own app in an advantageous position over those of rivals. And this is just as well, given that the Cupertino company has faced plenty of pressure from antitrust investigations and probes lately, in relation to allegations that the firm favors its own apps and services over third-party offerings.
So, this latest problem is one that Apple could have done without. Developer Kevin Archer drew attention to the issue on Twitter, sharing a video showing the Apple Music app replacing Spotify on the iPhone dock when it is installed.
Seems like if you download the Apple Music app from App Store, it will automatically appear on your device (iPhone) dock, more than this, it will change any other 3d party app with the Music app. If on your dock, you only have Apple apps it won't do anything. pic.twitter.com/c0pkO9G2pq
— Kevin Archer (@IM_Kevin_Archer) May 5, 2022
Predictably enough, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney was among those to suggest it was a sign of foul play by Apple, alleging that the Cupertino firm had “rigged their operating system to do this”.
I just verified this on iOS 15.4.1. With Spotify installed and on the dock, installing Apple Music removed Spotify from the dock and put Apple Music there – without asking. Happens without Apple Music being run, so clearly Apple has rigged their OPERATING SYSTEM to do this!
— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) May 5, 2022
But as the AppleInsider website explained in its own report on the issue, iOS apps “tend to try and install in a pre-configured location – especially default apps. Since the Apple Music app comes preinstalled in the right-most dock slot, it will always install in that location, no matter what app is present.”
Indeed, AppleInsider’s own testing apparently found that “any app sitting in that default slot will be bumped from the dock in favor of Apple Music regardless of who it is made by. Even Apple’s apps will get bumped out of that place.”
AppleInsider writer Wesley Hilliard added that Apple had reached out to confirm the behavior is a bug, and that it would be investigating the issue.
So, no, there isn’t any conspiracy here by Apple to dislodge rival music streaming apps such as Spotify, although the behavior isn’t exactly ideal, either.
With TechCrunch having reported that the bug seems to have occurred across multiple iPhone models and different iOS 15 variants, we can only hope that the glitch is fixed sooner rather than later.