Apple Suddenly Delays Game-Changing iOS 14 Privacy Feature
Apple has suddenly delayed a major iOS 14 privacy feature after pushback from Facebook and advertisers, according to a new report in the Information.
It comes after Facebook said last week that Apple’s privacy move—which would mean users have to actively opt in to app tracking—would hurt itself and its advertisers. So much so that Facebook said it was going to stop collecting the iPhone identifiers for advertisers (IDFA), on its own apps in iOS 14.
Apple’s move to delay this privacy feature in iOS 14 when it launches this Fall is not a rumor—the iPhone maker has confirmed to the Information that it is planning to launch it next year to “give developers the time they need to make the necessary changes.
It apparently followed growing tension between Apple and advertisers over the last few weeks as iOS 14’s launch drew closer. Specifically, the Information said third parties including big name game developers such as Activision Blizzard, Tencent-owned Supercell and N3twork has aired their views about how the privacy move would impact them.
Apple’s new tracking privacy feature could even impact the firm itself as gaming apps are usually supported by the targeted ads it would affect, and the iPhone maker makes revenue via a 30% cut via its store.
It will come as a huge relief to Facebook and others who rely on revenue through targeted advertising in iOS, but the move is massive blow to user privacy. Many people—myself included—were excited to see how this feature worked in practice. Because Apple’s iOS 14 tracking feature will highlight the data apps collect in the background, it could also help make all iPhone users more privacy-aware.
But it’s a difficult balance to find. Apple sells itself as the company that cares about privacy—its ad released today purveys that exact message.
Despite today’s move, that is still the case. But the Apple ecosystem is bigger than Apple itself, and it needs others to be able to work. Let’s hope we see this feature return in the coming months in a later iOS 14 update.
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