Get money from Google, does Apple lose points with users?

Apple and Google create two distinct images of how user data is treated. However, the figure of $ 15 billion in the agreement that Google for Apple is difficult to refuse.

iOS and Android are two operating systems that together have dominated mobile devices for more than a decade. While the features of iOS are always aimed at protecting user data, Android does not possess this due to the open nature of the operating system.

The two tech giants Apple and Google also have very different philosophies when it comes to user data. Apple has stated that it believes “privacy is a fundamental human right” and always puts this factor first.

In contrast, Google Search is the world’s largest advertising platform, and it’s not surprising that the company is one of the world’s largest collectors of user data.

Does Apple “sell” user information to Google?

In fact, Apple makes a lot of money every year from Google. According to analytical data from Bernstein Research, Google may have to pay 15 billion USD for Apple in fiscal year 2021 to make Google Search the default search engine on iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers.

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Google wants to make its search engine the default on the iPhone. Photo: Apple Insider.

This number is even increasing. Analysts predict Google’s costs could rise to 18-20 billion USD in 2022. While Apple doesn’t break down its different services revenue streams, most analysts say the Google deal is the most profitable part of the company’s services pie.

From a business perspective, Apple can’t let Google Chrome become the default browser on iOS because it already owns Safari – the app that most iPhone and iPad users use to surf the web. However, they can completely let Google Search become a search engine in the browser or in the operating system. This does not affect Safari, but still brings a large profit for Apple.

During Tim Cook’s 10 years as CEO, he made Apple the most valuable and profitable company ever. Apple’s greater focus on the services business has played a key role in that growth, especially during a time when the iPhone market is slowly maturing.

However, this inadvertently goes against the philosophy that Apple has been trying to build for many years – always value user data. Once Google has more opportunities on iOS operating system, the issue of user data security will no longer be focused.

Remove the image of respecting users

In a conversation with author Walter Isaacson, Steve Jobs once shared that he wanted to “destroy Android because it was a stolen product”. Perhaps this thinking of the late Apple founder comes from his completely opposite philosophy compared to his competitors.

Of course, Apple’s annual revenue will be significantly increased by the proceeds from Google. However, this seems to have gone against previous statements of the company under Tim Cook.

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iOS security is not as important as it used to be. Photo: Time.

For years, Tim Cook’s Apple has tried to separate itself from its competitors in the data collection story. The Company does not use user data to optimize browser advertisements. In addition, Apple does not track what users do on 3rd party apps and websites.

Even in 2015, when the FBI asked Apple to crack the password of the iPhone 5C of the perpetrators of the San Bernardino shootings (USA) to serve the investigation, the company firmly refused on the grounds of respect. respect user privacy. At that time, Apple received a lot of support for its steadfastness in its philosophy of protecting privacy, despite being accused by the FBI of aiding the perpetrators.

However, Apple’s image of privacy protection is gradually deteriorating. Apple’s announcement that it will update the feature that scans users’ photos to find CSAM – Child Sexual Abuse Material has caused a wave of backlash. In this case, the company says it’s having a noble cause when trying to prevent malicious content on iOS.

Meanwhile, Apple can’t deny anything when it comes to Google’s money. According to writer Jason Aten above Inc, only the fact that the company is getting a substantial profit every year by letting Google collect iPhone user data. This is clearly an issue that Apple cannot justify.

Aten thinks 15 billion USD for Apple is a small profit to ignore, but not so large that the company can change its name. Therefore, for a company that builds its brand on the trust of its users, Apple should not trade its values ​​at any cost.

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