Apple's privacy feature costs ad companies millions


“Ad tracking technology has become so pervasive that it is possible for ad tracking companies to recreate the majority of a person’s web browsing history. This information is collected without permission and is used for ad re-targeting, which is how ads follow people around the internet.”


“If this is accurate, it goes to show the outsize influence Safari has. Criteo is claiming that a new feature in Safari, a browser with only 15 percent of global share, resulted in more than a 20 percent drop in their revenue. This, despite the fact that Intelligent Tracking Prevention — the feature in question — doesn’t block ads per se. It only prevents certain methods of privacy-invasive tracking. I fail to see how this is a bad thing.”


Either tracking really does make advertising more effective or at least advertisers believe it does, so they aren’t willing to pay as much per-click for less-targeted ads. So, reduced tracking is bad for per-ad profits by the ad network.

I wonder if, before Apple’s moves, a higher percentage of non-Safari browsers (Chrome and Firefox mainly) had blockers. I assume that, in general, Firefox users have also been the highest proportional users of blockers. I haven’t seen any stats though.