The Apple-Facebook rivalry took a rather ‘bitter’ turn as the social media giant came out all guns blazing against the iPhone maker. At the heart of the latest tussle is Apple’s new App Tracking Transparency feature, which is set to change mobile advertising forever. Facebook yesterday carried out a newspaper ad, published a blog post and made a website detailing how Apple is out to harm millions of app developers. “We’re standing up to Apple for small businesses everywhere,” reads one part of the ad.
In the ad, Facebook further said what Apple is doing will be devastating for small businesses. “Without personalised ads, Facebook data shows that the average small business advertiser stands to see a cut of over 60% in their sales for every dollar they spend,” the ad — which appeared in leading US newspapers reads. “While limiting how personalized ads can be used does impact larger companies like us, these changes will be devastating to small businesses, adding to the many challenges they face right now,” the ad copy further notes.
Facebook also made arguments against Apple’s upcoming feature in a blog post. Facebook indirectly hinted that what Apple is doing may stop the internet from being free. “They’re creating a policy — enforced via iOS 14’s AppTrackingTransparency — that’s about profit, not privacy,” said Dan Levy, vice president, ads and business products, Facebook, in the blog post. “It will force businesses to turn to subscriptions and other in-app payments for revenue, meaning Apple will profit and many free services will have to start charging or exit the market,” added Levy in the blog post.
Facebook admitted that Apple’s move will hurt it but its impact will be more on small businesses. “There will be an impact to Facebook’s diversified ads business, but it will be much less than what will befall small businesses, and we’ve already been factoring this into our expectations for the business.”
Apple, meanwhile, rebuffed the claims of Facebook in a statement and made it clear that the new app transparency tracking feature is for the benefit of users. “We believe that this is a simple matter of standing up for our users. Users should know when their data is being collected and shared across other apps and websites — and they should have the choice to allow that or not. App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14 does not require Facebook to change its approach to tracking users and creating targeted advertising, it simply requires they give users a choice,” said Apple in a statement, as per a report by CNBC.