Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Differential Privacy Features Will Be Opt-In in iOS 10

Ina Fried of Recode has clarified with Apple how the company plans on collecting and using data through differential privacy in iOS 10. I think this is an astute summary:

While Apple is clearly pitching this as a just-right balance, it runs the risk of losing some of its privacy points while still not getting the kind of data it needs to truly rival Google and Facebook in the machine intelligence game.

You, as I, may see this is a good thing — that it is hard to implement these features in a privacy-conscious way. It’s a principled stance that user privacy has such importance that they’re willing to bet the company’s reputation for innovation and feature quality on it.

Others may be more pragmatic, and wish that Apple would relax their hard-lined stance on privacy in favour of a more rapid pace for launching new features. I understand where that comes from, but I also don’t see any other company in the Valley that’s standing up for users’ rights to the extent that Apple is.