It is unclear if Russians will notice the changes.
When accessed from outside of Russia, Apple’s Maps and Weather apps now show Crimea as part of Ukraine. The company’s position on the territorial issue appears to have been quietly modified. It’s possible that Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine had something to do with it.
When accessed in most places, Apple’s apps used to try to get around the problem by refusing to record Crimea as part of any country. Apple, on the other hand, modified its Maps and Weather apps in 2019 to portray Crimea as part of Russia when viewed from within Russia, breaking international agreement and infuriating Ukrainians.
Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Apple has taken a harder line towards the country, including reversing its policy on Crimea. Apple Maps, at least for individuals outside of Russia, now portrays Crimea as belonging to Ukraine, according to Mashable. Previously, the business tried to strike a medium ground by depicting the region as belonging to no one, but in 2019, it caved in to Russian pressure by depicting Crimea as Russian territory when seen from within Russia.
It’s unclear when Apple made the move, or whether Maps still offers Russian users discounts. Apple has been contacted for comment.
In 2014, Russia forcibly annexed Crimea, resulting in massive international condemnation and sanctions. Many countries continue to refuse to recognize Russia’s authority of the region, and other technology companies have attempted to resolve the conflict in a variety of ways. Crimea, for example, was still listed as belonging to no country on Google Maps.
The announcement comes only days after Apple halted sales in Russia and tightened content restrictions in the nation, limiting Apple Pay and banning apps for state-backed Russian news organizations RT and Sputnik. Even if it means losing revenue, the corporation is no longer willing to be as accommodating as it once was.
The bulk of the international world criticized Russia’s actions, refusing to recognize its claim to Crimea and calling the referendum illegitimate and illegal. In response to the invasion, the country was expelled from the G8, and penalties were imposed.
None of these sanctions, however, appear to have stopped Russia, as evidenced by its recent invasion of Ukraine. Apple responded to the invasion earlier this week by suspending product sales in Russia and deleting Russia Today and Sputnik News from App Stores outside the nation. The release made no mention of changes to the Apple Maps and Weather applications.
Apple issued a statement saying, “We are very worried about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and stand with all of the people who are suffering as a result of the violence.” “We will continue to assess the situation and are in contact with relevant governments about the activities we are taking,” says the statement.