iOS 14 privacy changes are an 'atomic bomb', says developer

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What you need to know

  • One App Store developer says upcoming iOS 14 changes will be an atomic bomb for advertising.
  • Tenko Games' Adam Jaffe expects mobile revenue to drop by 20% for one of his games.
  • He also says people will have to reinvent the job of marketing as a result.

One App Store developer says that upcoming privacy changes to iOS 14 will be an "atomic bomb" for the industry.

From Bloomberg:

Adam Jaffe's mobile game jostles daily with nearly a million others in Apple Inc.'s App Store to lure users -- and ideally some willing to spend real-world cash to boost their odds of victory.Now the Tenko Games CEO's ability to entice those lucrative players is about to dwindle.

Jaffe apparently expects his $3.5 million in revenue from Underworld Football Manager to drop by up to 20%, describing the changes as an "atomic bomb":

"It's like an atomic bomb," said the Barcelona-based former professional soccer player who's also a consultant for other game studios. "People are going to have to reinvent how they do the job of marketing -- well, not reinvent but go back to where it was 10 years ago."

Responding to the story, Apple reiterated in a statement that users should have a choice "over the data that is being collected about them and how it's used". When iOS 14.5 is released publicly, all apps will have to ask users whether or not they want to be tracked across apps and services using an IDFA identifier, the kind used by companies like Facebook to target ads at users. A report in March claimed that 99% of users offered the choice so far have refused.

Apple is holding its Spring Loaded April event next week, and it is rumored Apple could announce the release date of the major software update at the event.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

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

  • "People are going to have to reinvent how they do the job of marketing -- well, not reinvent but go back to where it was 10 years ago." I mean, doesn't that say it all? YES, YES, a thousand times YES. Please get rid of digital advertising with tracking. It should be illegal, frankly. As a software developer who has worked in large companies and startups either making ad servers (in one case), and in another case, deriving a substantial portion (in some cases, *all*) of our revenue from advertising, I can just tell you: Internet advertising is evil. Pure, unadulterated, evil. Capitalists, from small enterprises to large, are addicted to this drug. Just stop it. No business person, hungry for revenue, desperate to survive and pay the bills from month to month, or desperate to show revenue gains, quarter over quarter (depending on the situation), can afford to refuse advertising revenue. The only way out of this nightmare is to simply not allow it. Apple controls a huge, albeit minority share of the platforms that people consume content, and thank goodness they have finally put their foot down. If you're in a small company, hungry for ad revenue, soon it will be an equal platform between you and your competitors. Consider strongly switching to a subscription model for revenue, at least for part of it. It's painful, expensive, and hard, going off fossil's necessary, unless you like being evil. In large companies, you have the resources to build a subscription business it, and switch from trading free services for people's personal data to delivering an honest product for an exchange of money. And if you're in one of the companies who are building the technology that tracks people and mines their data, shame on you. Get a real job; something that does not take advantage of people's lack of understanding of how Internet businesses work. TV advertising and print advertising works just fine without having to track people. Why do Facebook and Google, and.....have to? Google's case, there was no other business model to support their search technology investment. In Facebook's, they're just evil, through and through (not all the individual employees, many or most of whom are I'm sure fine people, but the overall effect of the existence of the company on the world is....a net negative, i.e. evil). Just Say No. And quit complaining about Apple. They're hardly angels, and yes, to some degree their actions in this regard are self-serving and serve their competitive goals, but they're also an almost purely unalloyed public good. Both things can be true (i.e. Apple doing something that is in their selfish interests but overwhelmingly in the public's interests). Apple cares about
    • Their brand
    • Their users
    • Their revenue And they don't care about other capitalists much, if at all. This is why their selfish interests, in this case, align with the public's interests.
  • Apple cares about their revenue. Catering to users is just a way of securing a stable and high revenue stream. Don't get it twisted that they care about you. They don't. They care about the dollars.