Google announced Wednesday that it will begin removing ad trackers on its Android operating system to improve user privacy.

The proposed changes include eventually phasing out advertising ID, a special code assigned to each Android device allowing advertisers to build specialized profiles and serve targeted ads.

Google did not provide a definitive timeline in Wednesday’s blog post announcing the privacy updates, but said existing technologies would be supported for at least the next two years.

The announcement comes a year after Apple started asking users for permission before allowing advertisers to track them. 

That decision has shaken up the online advertising space. Meta, Facebook’s parent company, recently predicted that those changes will cost it $10 billion in lost revenue this year.

Google’s announcement said its changes would be less disruptive by making the changes over a longer period and consulting with the ad industry.

“We realize that other platforms have taken a different approach to ads privacy, bluntly restricting existing technologies used by developers and advertisers,” said Anthony Chavez, vice president of product management for Android security and privacy, in the blog post.  

“We believe that without first providing a privacy-preserving alternative path such approaches can be ineffective and lead to worse outcomes for user privacy and developer businesses,” he added. 

Google has been trying to do a similar privacy overhaul for its Chrome web browser but had delayed changes before ultimately scrapping its first proposal for targeting last month. 

Tags Advertising Alphabet Android Facebook Google Meta Privacy

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