According to reports, Google disclosed in the latest news that the company will postpone its plan to replace third-party advertising cookies until 2024.
“The most consistent feedback we’ve received so far is that more time is needed to evaluate and test the new privacy sandbox technology before it can replace cookies in Chrome.” Anthony Chavez, VP of Privacy Sandbox at Google “As developers adopt these APIs (application development interfaces), we’re now leaning toward phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome starting in the second half of 2024,” Chavez said in a Wednesday blog post.
A cookie is a small piece of code embedded on a website that can be sent to a visitor’s browser and remain in the browser while people visit other websites. This behavior has greatly contributed to the digital advertising ecosystem, allowing advertisers to track users across different websites to deliver targeted ads.
Google said last year that it would stop supporting cookies in its Chrome browser in early 2022 once it understood the needs of users, publishers and advertisers and developed tools to provide workarounds. But in June 2021, Google delayed the plan, giving the digital advertising industry more time to develop a plan for more privacy-focused, targeted ads.
The new plan shows it will take another two years for the company to implement the plan. The delay comes at a time when advertising and e-commerce companies have been hit hard by new privacy rules on Apple’s operating system that limit the ability of advertisers to obtain iPhone user identification numbers, making ads less accurate. Earlier this year, Facebook announced the plan would ultimately cost it $10 billion this year.
On top of that, US and UK lawmakers have recently been scrutinizing Google’s dominance of the ad tech ecosystem. Chavez wrote in a Wednesday blog post that Google is also expanding the testing of its Privacy Sandbox API.
This “sandbox” is actually a project launched in 2019 to find an alternative to cookies with as little impact as possible on content publishers and other interested parties. Last year, Google said it was “extremely confident” in third-party alternatives after advertisers expressed concerns about the change.
Developers can already test these APIs, but starting in early August, testing will expand to millions of users around the world and be generally available through the Chrome browser in the third quarter of 2023 — about a year from today.
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