Facebook is rolling out a new notification that prompts iPhone and iPad users to share their web and app activity with Facebook. According to Facebook, allowing this permission helps provide “ads that are more personalized.”
Facebook isn’t happy about Apple’s new anti-tracking policies. Apple’s App Tracking Transparency feature is set to go into effect sometime in spring 2021, and will require users to opt into certain permissions, like ad tracking.
Facebook is trying to offset Apple’s new feature by providing a notification that encourages users to allow activity tracking. The prompt will appear before Apple’s privacy notification, and states that opting in will help “provide a better ads experience.”
After you choose Allow or Don’t Allow, you’ll be faced with Apple’s own privacy notification that asks whether you want to be tracked. Facebook hopes that its initial notification will encourage users to keep the permission active, as Facebook claims that the benefits of tracking outweigh the negatives.
Facebook vs. Apple: The Privacy War Continues
In a post on the About Facebook Blog, the platform explained that “Apple’s new iOS 14 policy will have a harmful impact on many small businesses that are struggling to stay afloat and on the free internet that we all rely on more than ever.”
Not only does Facebook believe that Apple’s policy can harm small businesses, but it says that it will also make your ad experience less personalized. If you choose to decline Facebook this permission “you will still see ads, but they will be less relevant to you.”
Facebook’s blog post also makes it clear that the platform won’t be “collecting new types of data” when you enable activity tracking. The platform believes that it can provide a tailored advertising experience without invading your privacy, and further elaborates on this balance, stating:
Apple’s new prompt suggests there is a tradeoff between personalized advertising and privacy; when in fact, we can and do provide both. The Apple prompt also provides no context about the benefits of personalized ads.
Will Facebook Convince Users to Opt-In?
Facebook and Apple have been battling since Apple unveiled its new privacy features, and the war will likely continue until either giant caves.