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

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
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.

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Top Rated Comments

DNichter Avatar
24 weeks ago
I am very happy Apple is taking this stance and I'd imagine their users will feel the same way. It should be our choice to whether we or tracked or not.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Macintosh IIvx Avatar
24 weeks ago
iOS 14.5 allows people to let advertisers track them. They just have to opt-in to it.

Pretty hard to claim consumers shouldn't have a choice, but Facebook is trying hard to do so.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mtneer Avatar
24 weeks ago


<...>.....Cook reiterated Apple's longstanding belief that privacy is a "fundamental human right" ....<...>
Oh Golly.....

https://www.macrumors.com/2018/02/28/apple-transfers-china-icloud/
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jim Higgins Avatar
24 weeks ago

I wouldn't expect Apple to have much pull when it comes to country specific laws. I am assuming you feel Apple should pull all business from China?
Yes
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
icanhazmac Avatar
24 weeks ago
"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.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DNichter Avatar
24 weeks ago

Except in China.
I wouldn't expect Apple to have much pull when it comes to country specific laws. I am assuming you feel Apple should pull all business from China?
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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