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Apple is asking people to allow personalized ads when they open the App Store on iOS 15

Ios15 Preview Hero
Ios15 Preview Hero (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has begun to ask iOS 15 users to allow the App Store and other apps to offer personalized ads.
  • An unskippable message appears when people enter the App Store.

Apple has begun to ask iOS 15 users for their permission to show personalized ads, with the App Store and Apple News listed as apps that will benefit if they say yes.

The request, which cannot be skipped, appears when people open the App Store on devices running iOS 15. The message began to appear to users today and doesn't appear to be limited by geography.

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Personalised ads in Apple apps such as the App Store and Apple News help you discover apps, products and services that are relevant to you. We protect your privacy by using device-generated identifiers and not linking advertising information to your Apple ID.Turning on Personalised Ads increases the relevance of ads shown by letting us use data like account information, app and content purchases, and, where available, the types of News stories you read.

Apple goes on to point out that it "does not track you or share your personal information with any third parties."

Apple already requires that all apps in the App Store make a similar request before they can provide personalized ads of their own, something that has caused quite the kerfuffle. Facebook and ad agencies were keen to suggest that preventing users from being tracked from app to app without their permission would break small businesses around the world — although whether that has happened to date is unclear. Research does suggest a drop in ad spending, however.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on today's App Store message.

An iMore poll from April suggested that just 2% of users would allow apps to track them in order to provide personalized ads. It remains to be seen how that number changes in this instance given the fact it's Apple asking for permission.

Privacy is sometimes seen as the best iPhone feature by some. Recent CSAM announcements have caused some concerns that Apple's privacy stance isn't as strong as it once was, however.

Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.

3 Comments
  • "Apple goes on to point out that it "does not track you or share your personal information with any third parties." Well, that's really the important part to me. I have no problem getting ads that are more relevant to me. I suppose it is a matter of trusting Apple to hold to what they said. At least their primary business isn't selling your info.
  • I have no problem being asked by any app but I’m likely to say no. If they provide me radio buttons to select what I’d allow, they have a much better chance. Certain companies have gone way over the line in collecting data. What they do would not be allowed in the physical world. That has jaded me about allowing it and I think quite a few people also.
    But if an app or even the App Store is non BS legalese plain spoken, no gray area, specific what they collect, how they collect, no location tracking, no contacts downloading and tracking all purchases everywhere and similar of these, and if in plain spoken words state data is anonymous? I’ll much more comfortable to let app makers make money from giving me ads.
  • FWIW, I'm running the current Public Betas on phone and iPad an haven't gotten the screen on either.