Opposite to reports, Google just isn’t delaying updates to its iOS apps as a result of it doesn’t need to adjust to Apple’s just lately introduced App Store Privacy Labels policy. The brand new coverage, part of the corporate’s bigger privateness push, requires builders to reveal how knowledge is collected from App Retailer customers and used to trace them. TechCrunch confirmed Google just isn’t taking a stand in opposition to the labels. It’s, in actual fact, making ready to roll out privateness labels throughout its sizable iOS app catalog as quickly as this week or the subsequent.
TechCrunch seemed into the scenario with Google’s apps following a narrative by Fast Company as we speak that speculated that Google’s slowdown on releasing iOS app updates may very well be as a result of it was not able to be clear concerning the knowledge it collects from its customers. The report acknowledged that “not a single one” of Google’s apps had been up to date since December 7, 2020 — coincidentally, simply at some point earlier than Apple’s new privacy label requirements went into impact on the App Retailer.
It went on to counsel the late November to early December time-frame when a lot of Google’s iOS apps had been up to date was one other indication that Google was attempting to squeeze in a number of final updates earlier than the app privateness label deadline.
There are a number of issues with hypothesis, nonetheless.
For starters, Google truly did replace two of its apps after the deadline — however these updates didn’t embody privateness labels.
Google Slides, the slideshow presentation app and certainly one of Google’s extra vital apps within the productiveness house, was up to date on December 14, 2020. And Socratic by Google, a homework helper and the No. 7 free app within the Schooling class, was up to date on December 15. (We fact-checked this knowledge with Sensor Tower’s help, as Google’s iOS catalog is nearing 100 iPhone apps!)
Whereas it could appear Google is skirting Apple’s new guidelines, we should additionally watch out about studying an excessive amount of into the replace timing. A slowdown in December app updates isn’t uncommon by any stretch. Neither is it suspicious to see app modifications pushed out to the general public within the weeks earlier than Christmas and New 12 months’s as a result of the Apple’s App Retailer itself shuts down over the vacations. This yr, The App Retailer closed from December 23 by means of December 27, 2020 for its annual break.
And like different giant firms, Google goes on a code freeze in late December by means of early January, in order to not trigger main points with its services and products over the vacations when workers is out.
Google additionally isn’t the one main app writer that delayed a direct embrace of app privateness labels. Amazon and Pinterest haven’t but up to date with privateness labels as of the time of writing, for instance.
In fact, none of that is to say that app privateness labels aren’t a priority for Google, given its major enterprise is promoting. In reality, they’re being taken fairly critically — with execs attending conferences to debate that form of factor.
Apple could have given Google some leeway on the matter, it appears, because it allowed Google’s apps to replace after the deadline with out submitting the privateness label info. (That in all probability received’t make glad smaller builders who labored to adjust to the deadline, nonetheless.)
Reached for remark, a Google spokesperson confirmed the corporate has a plan so as to add privateness labels throughout its app catalog. Additionally they confirmed the labels are anticipated to start rolling out as quickly as this week or subsequent week, although an actual date just isn’t but out there.