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Google Ready to Add Privacy Labels to iOS Apps

Google has not yet worked towards updating its iPhone and iPad apps and ensuring that they fulfill the privacy information requirements laid down by Apple’s App Store. Though there were speculations about Google causing a delay in disclosing its privacy information data, it has now put these rumors to rest by releasing an official statement from their end.

On Tuesday, Google categorically stated that they will be putting out privacy information in the soon-to-be-done updates of the iPhone and iPad apps. A spokesperson from the company reached out to Tech Crunch and stated that the company will carry out updates with privacy labels for its entire library of applications. The first batch of updates is expected to happen sometime this week.

On 8 December 2020, Google released a new policy which, among other things, necessitated app developers to provide Google with privacy information that it can put out on the App Store. Interestingly, just a day before this, Google carried out a mass update of several apps on its App Store. Was releasing the notice just a day after this mass update a strategic move? This is something that only the officials at Google can answer.

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Also referred to as ‘nutrition labels’, this privacy information is being embedded in apps to make the various processes, including financial transactions, on the App Store come across as more transparent. Many times, users contemplate whether they should download a particular app or not, owing to privacy concerns. Now, the privacy labels will keep them fully aware of the amount of personal information that the app will ask of them and how and where it will store and how it will use it.

As of now, the apps can be on the App Store without publishing privacy information. But once the updates are made, they will be compelled to submit them. It was being said that Google has deliberately delayed the updates to keep its data collection strategies away from the public glare but the global tech giant has denied the involvement of any strategic move here. The spokesperson confirmed that Google respects the ‘nutrition label’ policy of Apple and will publish the requisite data soon.

It is important to note here that Apple seemingly gave Google permission to update two apps, Socratic and Google Slides, post the December 8 deadline minus the privacy information. There is no information on whether Google was allowed an exception to the regulations surrounding the privacy labels.

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