In Apple's opening speech on Monday, Tim Cook took the stage with a recently refined release whereby Apple's services are different. They are intuitive, of course, and there is Cupertino's usual concern about the details, but the important point came to an end. "They are designed to keep your personal information private and secure," he told the audience. As each new product, a credit card, a news service and a premium TV channel service came out, the executives emphasized how careful they were with the data involved and how much they valued the user's privacy.
From the right angle, you can see a larger picture of how Apple thinks about the services that are taking shape. Apple, in the transmission and digital payments, is competing against a generation of technology companies that are deeply influenced by Jobs and the iPhone. A good sense of design and software ecosystems are table bets, but not enough to give them an advantage over Google and Facebook. The advantage of Apple is that, unlike those giants, it does not sell targeted ads, and it does not collect or distribute the huge amounts of personal data associated with it. Given the choice, Apple is guessing that you'll want the digital wallet without the billion-dollar advertising business attached. In that way of thinking, online services compete with confidence, and Apple is launching itself as a privacy provider .
Apple has made this release before, although it has rarely been as pronounced as it was in Monday's event. As Facebook has overcome the scandal following the scandal, Tim Cook positioned Apple as a model of responsible technology, requesting a federal crackdown on data intermediaries and accepting new data privacy standards. For services like Photos and iMessage, where Google and Facebook offer almost identical competitors, Apple has proposed to keep the data on the device, a step that the competition can not give for business reasons.
The Apple event this week focused on a new credit card integrated with Apple Pay, a renewed news application and streaming services for games and TV, and each one fits the same privacy tone. What you spend your money on is incredibly confidential data, and it is widely monetized through the same data agents that Cook pressed to regulate. Apple can plausibly claim that it is less interested in monetizing your data than Visa or Bank of America because it is earning all the money it needs when selling the device. When the Apple Card Goldman Sachs partnership emerged, a carefully worded privacy promise appeared on the scene: "Goldman Sachs will never share or sell your data to third parties for marketing." (The card's privacy page clarifies: "Of course, Goldman Sachs will use your data to operate the Apple Card.")
The same privacy applies to the articles you read, which are potentially sensitive and replete with cross-site crawlers to allow sites to earn money A subscription service eliminates all of that, at least in theory, leaving only Apple with the data Netflix and Amazon do not focus on ads, but the new generation of smart TVs does he does, which gives him one more reason to see things on his iPad.
Like most Apple's projects are more about the ecosystem than any service, if you really believe that Apple is better at safeguarding your data, you will not be limited to using an Apple card for payments. Apple for all your confidential data and, of course, you will need Apple's devices to do so. Even if the company does not earn extra money with the Apple Card itself, privacy-focused services could pay massive dividends elsewhere in the company. Fundamentally, Apple is still collecting a large amount of data. In most cases, it's just sharing it with fewer companies.
There are reasons to be skeptical. Apple still collects a large amount of your data to optimize services and, occasionally, to run targeted ads, even if it does not scale Google and Facebook. The fact that their services are private may also be less convincing against Netflix and HBO, Apple's main competitors in television broadcasting, which sell a fairly simple product without specific advertising shenanigans to finance the product. Perhaps most importantly, Apple's new reputation as a privacy protector is based on looking beyond the history of iCloud account tricks, especially in the 2014 tricks that compromised celebrity accounts and flooded nude images in Internet. Even if you completely trust Apple, you are putting your data in the hands of a single centralized entity that knows who you are, which is inherently more risky than using a mosaic of more federated products.
However, it is difficult to criticize Apple to try it There is a serious lack of confidence in the technological world at this time, and any company that can close that gap will reap immense rewards. It is not easy to compete with Google and Facebook, and this type of privacy game could be the best way to do it. When Apple plunges fully into the service business, it's exactly the kind of angle it needs.