What you need to know
- Google is clamping down on tracking on Android.
- It is making it harder for Android apps to track users who have opted out of personalized ads and sharing their Advertising ID.
- It comes as developers have been able to circumvent current measures on the platform.
Google has confirmed that later this year it will increase efforts to protect users from tracking on Android, in a move experts say is an attempt to compete with Apple's App Tracking Transparency changes in iOS 14.
As reported by the Financial Times:
As the report notes Android users can already limit ad tracking and reset their IDs, but developers "have been able to circumvent those settings" using alternative device identifiers, the focus of these new measures.
Google confirmed the news in a support document on Advertising ID which now states "Starting in late 2021, when a user opts out of interest-based advertising or ads personalization, the advertising identifier will not be available. You will receive a string of zeros in place of the identifier."
The page explains:
Apple's own iOS 14 changes have been met with strong pushback from the likes of Facebook regarding the impact it could have on advertising sales and revenue. Recent news indicates Apple's measures have seen a reduction in spending and falling ad prices. Ironically, reports have also indicated that some advertisers are spending more on Android as a result of the measures. As FT notes, experts believe the measures are designed to compete with Apple's ATT changes:
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Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9