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Ask the Experts: Android Will Eliminate Cross-Device Tracking in 2022

Andrew Levenson, director of growth at MHP/Team SI discusses the latest data privacy update that may impact your advertising. Google has announced that Google Play will follow Apple’s privacy measures and will be changing how they handle the unique device identifier that allows markets to track users between apps.

As you may know, in late April Apple rolled out ATT, also known as Apple Tracking Transparency.

What this does is prompts iOS14.5 users with a popup upon their first visit to an iOS application which allows users to limit their cross-application and cross-site tracking, giving them control of their data.

Google has now released an email to Google Play Store members announcing they were following suit with Apple’s privacy measures from an app perspective saying they will be changing how they handle the unique device identifier that allows marketers to track users between apps. 

This change will eliminate the ability for advertisers to track the users’ advertising ID upon a users’ opt-out of personalized advertising.

Opting out of personalized advertising on Android is not something that’s new, this has been an ability on Android devices; however, opting out currently doesn’t currently block advertisers from identifying and using the unique advertiser ID for advertising purposes.

According to the Financial Times, Google’s email told developers that the change will provide users with more control over their data and help bolster security and privacy, the following suit with Apple’s ATT that they rolled out in late April [2021].

Google’s support page says that the rollout of the new policy will have a phased approach. Android 12 devices will start seeing the changes in late 2021 before it rolls out to all devices with Google Play early next year.

At MHP/Team SI, we’ve been monitoring the privacy ecosystem very closely and will continue to share information as new developments arise.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out.