Apple said it would introduce a controversial privacy feature against companies, including Facebook.
In response to a letter from many privacy campaigns, the company said it was fully committed to the new update, which will be released early next year.
This was announced by Apple CEO Craig Federighi. Independent He said that the company’s confidentiality role and support were “core values” and that the change stemmed from a long-standing philosophical commitment to excessive data collection.
Ultimately, he insisted, the feature would be “better for today’s people, sometimes in protest,” as it increased confidence in the applications and devices needed for developers and advertisers to work.
A new feature called App Tracking Transparency, or Apple’s ATT, allows users to exclude data collection and retrieval as they move between apps. Users’ phones have a unique identifier that allows advertisers to track their activities on the iPhone, but the new feature will ask them if they want it to happen, and even if they don’t openly accept it, tracking will be prohibited.
The tracking feature has caused a lot of controversy among advertisers and the companies they work with, claiming that it could disrupt their work. Critics have also included Facebook, saying it should disable some features in response to a planned update.
The ATT feature was expected to arrive with iOS 14 when the iPhone launched in September. However, Apple has postponed the launch until early next year to give developers the time to fully integrate the technical aspects of the feature, which could cause some major issues in some applications.
This led to a letter from various privacy advocates and advocates, including Amnesty International and the Electronic Border Fund, writing to Apple to support the feature ahead of the planned sale.
Apple said in response that it “remains”[s] We are committed to our comprehensive approach to the OSCE and privacy. “We developed ATT for a reason: because we share your concerns about users being tracked without their consent and data brokers and ad networks collecting and selling data,” Apple said in a letter signed by CEO Jane C. Horvath. global privacy director.
The letter also discusses two arguments made by ATT’s opponents: that it is a threat that will overwhelm small businesses on the way to the Internet, and that Apple favors the application itself. In the letter, Ms Horvath states that privacy-friendly advertising is “the standard until the Internet grows” and that this feature “applies equally to all developers, including Apple.”
In an interview with IndependentMr. Federighi said that while these features had received special attention recently, they were a continuation of a commitment to privacy that Apple had been a part of “since the beginning of the company.” He noted that Steve Jobs introduced the Apple II in the late 1970s, which would allow users to protect their data on floppy disks and control their data.
This feature is a continuation of a series of other controls added to the iPhone and other devices in recent years to protect users’ privacy, he said. Recent updates, for example, have added a feature that only shares some photos with one app, not the entire library, and displays a colored light when you enter the camera or microphone; When the new update shows users, the subscription message will be similar.
Mr Federighi has voiced his opposition to the idea that these characteristics could harm advertising companies and the industries that depend on them. Similar arguments have been made by some parts of the advertising industry when introducing anti-tracking features in the Safari web browser, but they have not been disclosed.
“A few years ago, we introduced smart surveillance prevention, and at the time, parts of the advertising industry were saying the sky would fall and their work would be ruined because they couldn’t keep up. all from one website to another, ”he said.
“In fact, if you look at what’s happening in the industry, it never happened, and at the same time, we kept user privacy.”
Federighi said that customers still had the option of using devices made by Apple or other companies, noting that in most markets the company was not yet the largest manufacturer. Therefore, Apple said that this represents a choice that people can choose not to make, comparing this policy with the application of security measures in cars.
“If we sell cars with airbags and we decide to put airbags in our cars before others, and customers want to buy them, I think it is very good that we provide this option,” he said. “We don’t expect anyone to ask us to do this, we want to use our platform.”
Federighi said that in some cases, users would be offered other options, while in others they would follow competitors. When Apple introduced privacy protections in Safari, some said the feature would be “risky,” but customers said they required them in other browsers and were more standard.
“When we show customers that they expect such privacy protections, one customer starts demanding it and the rest of the industry starts to follow,” he said. And we would like to see it in many other ways.
Federighi said the delay was the result of technical issues raised by developers who feared the new feature would cause major problems with the operating system, rather than the ongoing debate about the policy behind the new feature. or disputes about its continuation. Some developers have expressed concern that “because we always have an advanced tracking system in our system, we will not be able to do what the user wants from us.”
Apple said it does not intend to make immediate changes to the way privacy features work in the future. “But of course we will watch and see what happens and make sure we can keep the ecosystem healthy,” he said, noting that changes can be made in the future.
In particular, he showed developers the SKAdNetwork app, a new tool introduced to ensure that an ad is tracked when a product, which is a key metric for many advertisers, generates sales. “We have created a framework to do this to maintain some privacy,” he said, adding that future updates could “provide more ways to allow the advertising industry to increase its ability to advertise effectively while maintaining privacy,” and we want to work technically ». on solutions to make it more efficient.