Despite criticism from Facebook, Apple is preparing to introduce a new feature in iOS that will make it more difficult to target advertisements on mobile applications. As a reminder, this function should be introduced in 2020. However, Apple has decided to postpone the rollout until 2021 to give the various affected players more time to prepare.
The new feature will appear in a candidate version for the future iOS 14.4 update
In any case, the Cupertino company doesn’t seem to be considering returning. And the start of the function could even be imminent.
As the Cult of Mac website reports, Apple has recently made the candidate versions for iOS 14.4 available to developers. One of the novelties of these candidate versions is the functionality that limits the ability to target advertising to iOS applications.
Developers must obtain the explicit consent of the user before they can use IDFA
To be precise, Apple won’t ban the advertising of iOS apps or user tracking between apps. However, Cupertino will force developers to be more transparent.
To make ads that appear relevant, many apps use an identifier called IDFA, which is specifically designed for ads. Like third-party cookies on the web, this identifier can be used to track user activity between multiple applications.
Currently, this identifier can be used by applications without the user noticing. However, with the update planned by Apple, developers must explicitly obtain user permission before they can use this identifier for ads.
Most iOS users are also expected to decline this tracking if their consent is requested.
A measure that has heightened tensions between Apple and Facebook
Of course, Apple’s move does not please some gamers, including Facebook. In fact, the social network provides a network of advertisers called the Audience Network that displays advertisements in third party applications and uses the IDFA to make those advertisements relevant.
Plus, the introduction of iOS’s new feature has only exacerbated tensions between Apple and Facebook. The latter specifically accuses the Cupertino company of undermining the economic recovery of SMEs. A month ago, Facebook launched an advertising campaign to criticize Apple’s move and position itself as the one defending the interests of small businesses.
Apple has also introduced a new function in the App Store to make apps more transparent about data processing.
In addition to the consent request that is mandatory for applications that want to use IDFA to target advertisements, Apple recently introduced a new feature in the App Store to help users better understand how their data is being used.
This is kind of a personal data processing sheet that developers need to fill out. On this sheet, the App Store can then display an equivalent of nutrition labels (easy to understand labels), but for the processing of personal data on the apps’ pages.