In an interview with Axios — which, despite being a well-funded website with an HBO television show, apparently cannot afford a tripod or, for that matter, a colourist — Tim Cook explored a few pet topics of the company. Most notably, he explained why Google has remained the default search engine in various places on MacOS and iOS, something that was criticised after his speech last month at the ICDPPC:
One, I think their search engine is the best. … But, two, look at what we’ve done with the controls we’ve built in. We have private web browsing. We have an intelligent tracker prevention. What we’ve tried to do is come up with ways to help our users through their course of the day. It’s not a perfect thing. I’d be the very first person to say that. But it goes a long way to helping.
There is something that will always be a little contradictory about Apple’s privacy stance if you view it from an absolutist perspective. If Google were not the default search engine in Safari but users were still able to select it as an option, would that be in conflict with how it views user privacy? Should they still allow apps from Google and Facebook in the App Store? It begins to feel like a Mister Gotcha strip.
Cook also acknowledged the likelihood of privacy regulations in the United States. It’s a good interview, but the Axios format doesn’t make for a particularly compelling read, though it’s better than watching it.