Apple’s New Safari Update is Consumer-Friendly​​​​​​​

Apple announced plans for its newest update of Safari, which will include blocking ads featuring autoplay videos. More importantly to consumers, the new Safari update will also ban third-party tracking, the way advertisers track your browsing habits in order to send you retargeted ads.

Third-party tracking is a predominant driving force for so many (especially young) consumers that utilize new ad blocking technologies such as AdBlock Plus. Google recently announced its own proposed updates to the Chrome browser claiming it will block any and all ads it deems harmful or disruptive to the online experience.

The difference between the two companies is that Apple’s update directly benefits the consumer. Eliminating third-party tracking gives consumers a security Google’s “filter” doesn’t offer. Personal information and browser history won’t be tracked and then sold to advertisers to create the online ad experience.

Google’s ad “filter” (they call it a filter, but it’s a blocker) doesn’t include any provisions on banning third-party tracking. It will have the power to block the majority of ads not created by itself or the Coalition of Better Ads and could act as a self-serving ploy to monopolize the ad world even further.

According to AdWeek, 62% of consumers aged 13-to-25 years old use an ad blocker on one of their devices. Young consumers block ads because they find them irrelevant and disruptive, but they do realize ads are a crucial part of the Internet. It’s not that they ignore all ads. They just ignore ads that interrupt or don’t respect their online experience.

“I think the painful reality for ad tech is that there’s a consumer trust issue that’s playing out,” said Jason Kint, CEO of Digital Content Next. “The industry has continually failed to address it.”

Because of this lack of trust, consumers use ad blockers to make themselves invisible to trackers. With Apple’s latest update to Safari, it tackles two of the worst realities of the Internet. Not only will annoying autoplay videos be a thing of the past, but also consumers will hopefully have a much better sense of online privacy.  


G.J. Melia