Ios 14.5 App Tracking Transparency HeroSource: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore

What you need to know

  • Tim Cook says Apple's customers love App Tracking Transparency.
  • He says the feedback to changes made to tracking in iOS 14 has been "overwhelmingly positive".
  • Apple made third-party tracking across apps and services an opt-in feature earlier this year.

Apple CEO Tim Cook says that changes made to iOS 14 that make tracking an opt-in service have been extremely popular with its customers.

Cook made the comments speaking to analysts at Apple's earnings call on Thursday. Asked about feedback Apple had received and the impact the feature was having on businesses, Cook stated:

The feedback from customers is overwhelmingly positive. Customers appreciate having the option of whether they want to be tracked or not. And so, there's an outpouring of customer satisfaction there on the customer side. And the reason that we did this is that -- as you know, if you followed us for a while, we believe strongly that privacy is a basic human right and we believe that for decades, not just in the last year or so.

Cook went on to say Apple had historically rolled out more and more features over time to place the decision of whether to share data, and what data to share, in the hands of the user, he continued "we don't think that's Apple's role to decide, and we don't think that's another company's role to decide but rather the individual who owns the data itself. And so, that's our motivation there. There's no other motivation."

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It comes as companies have posted mixed reactions to ATT in recent weeks. Alphabet (Google) and Twitter have both reported seeing a minimal impact on their revenue, however, Snap shares fell by 25% last week on the back of reports it had missed its earnings target because of the changes. Facebook also warned of "significant uncertainty" going into Q4 in light of continued headwinds from the changes.

With iOS 14.5 Apple made tracking using an IDFA marker across different apps and service an opt-in feature, making it harder to target users with advertising on Apple's best iPhones including iPhone 12 and the new iPhone 13.

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