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Starting with iOS 14.5, iPadOS 14.5, and tvOS 14.5, Apple will be requiring apps to receive a user's permission to track their activity for targeted advertising purposes, as part of a privacy measure known as App Tracking Transparency.

tim-cook-toronto-star.jpeg

Ahead of App Tracking Transparency being enforced, Apple CEO Tim Cook has participated in a privacy-focused interview with the Toronto Star, telling the Canadian newspaper that Apple is "not against digital advertising" and simply believes that users should have transparency and control as it relates to being tracked by apps for advertising purposes.
We're not against digital advertising. I think digital advertising is going to thrive in any situation, because more and more time is spent online, less and less is spent on linear TV. And digital advertising will do well in any situation. The question is, do we allow the building of this detailed profile to exist without your consent?
When asked about some major companies like Procter & Gamble that have reportedly been trying to find ways to get around App Tracking Transparency, Cook said any pushback on the change is likely because companies will no longer be able to track users without them knowing, resulting in less data being collected to build a profile on users.
The only reason why you would push back is if you believe you'll get less data. The only reason you would get less data is because people are consciously deciding not to do it and were not being asked before.
Cook reiterated Apple's longstanding belief that privacy is a "fundamental human right" and expressed his belief that privacy regulations around the world "will eventually catch up" with policies like App Tracking Transparency.

Cook said that App Tracking Transparency will launch "in a few weeks," but it's unclear when the interview was held. iOS 14.5 is believed to be nearing release following over two months of beta testing with many new features, including the much-awaited ability for Apple Watch users to unlock their iPhone with Face ID while wearing a mask.

Article Link: Tim Cook Says Apple is 'Not Against Digital Advertising' Ahead of iOS 14.5 Launch With App Tracking Transparency
 
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mtneer

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Sep 15, 2012
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icanhazmac

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Apr 11, 2018
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"The only reason why you would push back is if you believe you'll get less data. The only reason you would get less data is because people are consciously deciding not to do it and were not being asked before."

THIS!

Very few "want" to be tracked, given a choice almost everyone will opt out. Hopefully this also leads to the end of free apps using the ad supported model.
 
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MajorFusion

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Jan 27, 2007
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I'm not against targeted advertising either. I'm going to be advertised to, that's a fact . . . might as well be something I at least have an interest in. I also agree that I should have a choice and this effort is another reason I'm happy to stay locked in the Apple ecosystem. It's not perfect, it seems to have continued to drift on the quality post-Jobs, and I don't believe Apple, or any company, should be digging in on politics like they do, but after spending decades on both the PC and Apple platforms, I still prefer Apple products. I like the fact that a selling point for a company is my privacy and security. It creates more of a buy-in and they have more at stake when dollars are on the line.
 
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MajorFusion

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Jan 27, 2007
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What Apple defines as bad or good depends entirely on whether or not it is a profit center for Apple.
I don't know . . . do you like being tracked without your consent? This one seems pretty obvious to me. The company has bet on the idea of security and privacy as a selling point to their products. I don't really have any objections to it. At the end of the day, they're a corporation and their job is to make money. If they do this by offering features I agree with, what difference does it make?
 
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Rudy69

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Mar 30, 2009
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Ads don't need to track what you've been doing for the past year. Ads used to be related to what you were looking at. For example you're looking at MacRumous? Well here's some ads for some Mac / iPhone accessories etc. See no need to track that I have a dog and 20 kids and might be interested in a sex swing!
 
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THEENDUSER

macrumors newbie
Jun 16, 2011
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I LOVE that now I will have an option upfront to opt out of tracking. This should definitely be the norm and not the exception from now on. It is more than fair to allow users control over their own data, too much of our personal data is out there as it is. Apple is not perfect as a company, but this is definitely a GOOD thing.
 
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ClearScreen

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Feb 4, 2015
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What Apple defines as bad or good depends entirely on whether or not it's a profit center for Apple.
Substitute "Apple" in this sentence for any other company ever.

Either people are mad at Apple for not doing enough or for publicly (and somewhat hypocritically) pointing to the halo on their heads. I find this is all easier to take if you don't expect companies to be paragons of goodness and treat any such statement with many grains of salt.

Regarding privacy, I am simply content that Apple's incentives align with my own preferences and leaving it at that.
 
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nvmls

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Mar 31, 2011
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Ads don't need to track what you've been doing for the past year. Ads used to be related to what you were looking at. For example you're looking at MacRumous? Well here's some ads for some Mac / iPhone accessories etc. See no need to track that I have a dog and 20 kids and might be interested in a sex swing!
Can't blame ya, with 20 kids and a dog, better to swing than buying a walmart depot to host the entire family.
 
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BootsWalking

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Feb 1, 2014
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Substitute "Apple" in this sentence for any other company ever.
I agree 100%. The difference though is those other companies and their CEO's aren't sanctimonious virtue-signalers who pretend they care about something other than profit. If Mr. Cook instead said "we're protecting your privacy because it doesn't cost us anything to do so and provides us a competitive advantage" then I would applaud, both because I actually agree with privacy protection and because he was actually being forthright.
 
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MajorFusion

macrumors newbie
Jan 27, 2007
10
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Then it's not actually a "fundamental human right". Unless the Chinese are somehow subhuman.
Corporations like to take political stances these days. They also like to throw around words and phrases that trigger emotions instead of adhering to the facts at hand. Health care is a "fundamental human right". Internet access is a "fundamental human right". etc . . . There's actually not that many fundamental human rights, truly . . . While I don't know if privacy is one of them (I think I would, I certainly like my privacy), Apple doesn't really care, they are beholden to shareholders and money is the bottom line. I disagree on a LOT of Apple's political stances, but boycotting corporations on that alone would leave me living in a box down by a river . . .
 
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