Apple Blocks Facebook Web Tracking, “Memoji” Takes Form And More In This Week’s Friday Download
June 8, 2018
By FTI Consulting
This week we had our eyes trained on a screen for the latest gossip and drama (sorry to disappoint we’re not talking about Jack’s overly whitened teeth #LoveIsland) from Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC). This year’s conference was not lacking in shocking revelations, particularly the announcement from Apple’s VP of Software Craig Federighi that Safari is set to block Facebook’s web tracking. Perhaps raising even more eyebrows was Federighi calling out Facebook by name at the conference, stating that it would put an end to “like buttons and share buttons” tracking your activity across the web after you have left the site. Under the new version of iOS and Mac operating systems, targeted advertising companies such as Google and Facebook will have to ask for permission before they can track activity. This measure could have far-reaching implications for the companies as the less they are able to target audiences on these platforms, the less advertisers will be willing to pay for their services. Similarly, for publishers and brands it may become increasingly difficult to reach consumers using Apple’s operating systems through paid advertising. For consumers the question will be, do they want their Mac to “look like all other Macs”, or would they prefer the personalisation that Google and Facebook offer. Only time will reveal the impact of Apple’s move, in the meantime it is worth bearing in mind that there is no substitute for high quality organic content which plays to your audience’s interests.
It wasn’t just Facebook and Google who were caught up in the WWDC drama. At the conference Apple launched a new AR based tool for iOS 12 called “Memoji”. Sounds familiar?
That’s because it is almost identical to the Snap-owned Bitmoji app. One would assume that Snapchat would be understandably worried about Apple stepping into its market, however the drama thickens as it turns out that Snapchat worked with Apple to develop the tool. Some commentators have suggested that the users who would prefer to use visual effects in their native apps are not likely to be Snapchat’s audience, hence their willingness to collaborate. Whether or not this is the case, the key message for us all is that AR is becoming an increasingly mainstream form of communication amongst consumers, whilst being under represented in usage by brands.
Time Well Spent
If you’re an avid follower of The Download you may have noticed that we have been discussing “digital wellness” (here and here) and we aren’t the only ones as it was a key highlight of the WWDC.
Amongst the drama of the conference Apple did some soul searching and delivered a feature which will help you manage the amount of time you spend on your devices. The new tools will enable you to monitor and limit the amount of time you spend on your device, as well as adding further controls on attention-grabbing notifications. As Arielle Pardes of Wired rightly points out, Apple is well positioned to lead the way in digital wellness as it makes its money from the hardware, not the software, therefore it has nothing to lose if you spend less time on your phone. However, the measure may have a greater impact on publishers and brands who could find their audiences less available as they begin to spend more time outside of the digital sphere. The question that we need to start asking ourselves when developing content is, “Does engaging with this count as time well spent?” For those interested in finding out more about this topic we would recommend checking out Thrive Global.
Also This Week
Instagram might soon let you post videos up to an hour long – The Verge
Uber will drop up to $500 million on ads letting you know how truly sorry it is – Gizmodo
The views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and not necessarily the views of FTI Consulting LLP, its management, its subsidiaries, its affiliates, or its other professionals, members or employees.
FTI’s digital practice in EMEA operates as a centre of excellence for digital communications within the firm and is staffed by a team of practitioners with industry experience of consumer, corporate and financial communications. The team runs an active portfolio of multi-sector brands and partners with FTI’s teams and clients to provide a wide range of online reputation management services.