google: Explained: What are Google’s new app privacy restrictions


Google has announced new privacy restrictions for Android with the aim of reducing tracking across Android devices. The multi-year initiative to build the Privacy Sandbox on Android aims to introduce more private advertising solutions. Apple introduced similar features for its iOS platform in 2021. However, Google’s privacy plan is likely to be not as disruptive as Apple’s. Here, we will discuss how Google’s new app privacy restrictions are different from Apple’s app tracking system.
What are Google’s new app privacy restrictions on Android?
According to Google, “…these solutions will limit sharing of user data with third parties and operate without cross-app identifiers, including advertising ID. We’re also exploring technologies that reduce the potential for covert data collection, including safer ways for apps to integrate with advertising SDKs.” For those unaware, the advertising ID is a unique string of characters that identifies the user’s device.
Will the policy be as drastic as Apple’s
While it’s too early to say as this is a multi-year initiative, for now, it seems it will not be. Google without naming Apple said that some platforms have used technologies that hurt other industries. “We realize that other platforms have taken a different approach to ads privacy, bluntly restricting existing technologies used by developers and advertisers. We believe that — without first providing a privacy-preserving alternative path — such approaches can be ineffective and lead to worse outcomes for user privacy and developer businesses,” says the company in a blog post.
Message to developers and companies
“Our goal with the Privacy Sandbox on Android is to develop effective and privacy enhancing advertising solutions, where users know their information is protected, and developers and businesses have the tools to succeed on mobile,” adds the post.
What is the timeline for roll-out?
According to Google, “While we design, build and test these new solutions, we plan to support existing ads platform features for at least two years, and we intend to provide substantial notice ahead of any future changes.”
What did Facebook say about Google’s policy?
Facebook which has seen its market cap and revenue see a huge dent post-Apple’s privacy changes seems open to Google’s move. “Encouraging to see this long-term, collaborative approach to privacy-protective personalized advertising from Google. We look forward to continued work with them and the industry on privacy-enhancing tech through industry groups,” said Graham Mudd, business products head at Facebook on Twitter. The tweet tags Google’s blog post.