Snapchat Begins Asking Users to Allow App Tracking ‘To Reduce Repetitive Ads’

BY Sanuj Bhatia

Published 15 May 2021

snapchat app tracking transparency

Snapchat has begun complying with iOS 14.5’s App Tracking Transparency as the company has rolled out a new ‘educational’ screen asking users to allow app tracking to reduce ‘irrelevant and repetitive’ ads.

With iOS 14.5, Apple finally released app tracking transparency. This feature, as we all know by now, prevents advertisers and developers from tracking a user’s app usage and thus limiting them from showing personalized ads to the user. Many tech giants such as Facebook and Alibaba are reportedly ‘fretting’ over it as it could potentially lower the company’s ad revenue.

Now that the feature is available, app developers have to comply with it before rolling out an app update. Snapchat recently rolled out an update that has started showing a new ‘educational’ screen to the user asking users to turn on app tracking, and also brought dark mode for some.

On the new educational screen, Snapchat asks “Want to help us reduce the number of ads you find irrelevant or repetitive” and then presents the user with a ‘mock app tracking pop-up’ asking the user to click allow. An average Joe who doesn’t read the terms carefully would be trapped into pressing ‘Allow’ — since the mockup only shows the Allow button.

But otherwise, compared to some other apps, Snapchat’s messaging about ad relevancy rather falls short. Facebook and Instagram have rolled out their app tracking update, and ask users to allow app tracking to keep their service ‘free of charge.’

It’s not like Snapchat has been carefree about App Tracking Transparency, though. The company has had its own concerns. It first said that the feature ‘presents an uncertain future,’ and then supposedly developed an alternative to app tracking.

Have you updated to iOS 14.5 yet? How many apps have asked you to enable app tracking? Let us know in the comments section below!