Big-tech collects user & device data not just for advertising purposes but also primarily for market and customer research aswell as training & improving various services, algorithms or virtual assistants. Data is incredibly valuable for this purpose. Apple also does provide access of certain data to 3rd party apps or service providers for the same reasons, this is, in effect, selling data.
; "We make certain non-personal data available to our advertisers and strategic partners that work with Apple to provide our products and services, help Apple market to customers, and sell ads on Apple's behalf"
. Or here
; "We may collect, use, transfer, and disclose non-personal data for any purpose.
". Same applies to Apple TV, Apple Music, Stocks or App store. What is & isn't considered personal data by Apples standards is hazy at best & not clearly defined. Personal data is also being collected, as stated here
; "Apple uses personal data to power our services, to process your transactions, to communicate with you, for security and fraud prevention, and to comply with law
.". When Apple allows for disabling of personal data collection, it is, again, not clearly defined what does or doesn't constitute personal data. Apple claims to enforce certain data security measures, such as stripping your data personal identifies, onto 3rd party apps & services. In practice this is essentially impossible to enforce.
I use an iPhone because of its simple & intuitive UI aswell as its reliable hardware, but not for security reasons. Apple isnt evil, but as a major, publicly traded company its responsibility lies in its profitability, not in its users data security.
No offense intended to you, Olumin, and I really appreciate you giving this perspective, but your argument is vague and unconvincing. Fundamentally, it is a hasty generalization of the form "all big business does this, Apple is big business, so Apple does this," basically a corporate boogie man argument. We know that for Google's and Facebook's (and others') business model to even work, it must be centered around collecting personal data and online tracking so that online targeted advertisement can function.
Apple is a hardware company. All that is required for their business model to work is that they sell their hardware, though they also sell some software, and their App Store package manager is insanely profitable for them, they are still fundamentally a hardware company. And they're at a level now where their hardware is flying out of their inventory, and for a long time. Remember that they ran out of the original iPad stock, miscalculating how popular it would be, and they lost a lot of money because of that. If they were doing intensive market research, that would not have occurred. All Apple needs to do is keep up with demand of their product, which is massive. Marketing is incredibly useful to lesser or unknown companies and their product, while Apple is the most recognizable company on the planet now, edging out Coca-Cola years ago. Apple doesn't need to market in the way that you think that they do. All they really need to do is announce new products. The products market themselves.
Also, you are mischaracterizing the collection of data by third parties on Apple devices. Apple doesn't make any profit from that, and because developer overhead is identical whether they collect data or not, I'm not sure how you can reasonably say that Apple is selling them that data.
Every updated Apple device gives the option of opting out of data collection by third parties, and, further, this feature nags the user to make a decision rather than defaulting either way. IOW, you are required to opt into
data collection for it to occur. But in particular what I think would be concerning to you, and how to deal with it, is covered in this article
Regarding Apple's new advertising services, ads have so far been confined to AppStore and News+. Though the new service when announced provoked a lot of outrage, we haven't yet seen what is feared, but presumably it will at least extend to AppleTV. Maybe I'm a little unsympathetic towards the fears of finger-pointers here, but I don't use AppStore, News+ or AppleTV, and if I can avoid them, so can anyone else.
Apple does not do any direct mail marketing nor any targeted online advertising where market research is effective. Apple has B2C (such as selling to Best Buy), B2C (corporate sales), and DTC (Apple Stores) marketing. Apple's entire marketing strategy to their customers is centered around UVP (Unique Value Proposition, i.e. how they improve aspects of their customers' lives) solely
using a combination of TV commercials,
and very recently (since 2019) print advertising
(in periodicals with massive subscription base such as the nyt, wsj, lat, etc.) to promote product lines, for which individual
market research would be entirely useless. Apple also relies heavily on their yearly keynote speeches, where new new products and advancements to the public are introduced.
One last aspect I can think of, which may be considered a marketing strategy in a way, is that Apple is incredibly secretive. The only way we hear about what Apple is doing is through rumor. Apple has gone so far as to prosecute an individual that picked up a lost (left) device prototype (at a bar I think) after that individual posted images of it online. The device was returned, the images taken down, and the charges were dropped. Apple effectively ran the Think Secret rumor website out of business through litigation. This is an interesting marketing strategy that I expect was the brain child of none other than Steve Jobs. While most companies would happily accept the free advertising, Apple uses secrecy and jealously protecting all information about their upcoming products in order to drive interest. And it is weird, but it works.
I should also add in the interests of full disclosure that I own and use Apple products (a few Macs (the newest is a 2012 release) and an iPad mini 5th gen), but when I work, it is in the corporate IT space, which is dominated by Microsoft. I consider myself agnostic and my ideology is solution-based (whatever works) and centered on each client's pleasure (whatever they want). I would never waste my time and their's telling them "try Apple," when they requested or specced Windows, Linux, BSD, Oracle, whathaveyou. I just don't care enough, and it's important to my success that the client is satisfied. The easiest and most profitable path to that end is to give them exactly what they want, for better or worse, and support their continuing needs. Microsoft Windows, for all its flaws and security issues, has caused me a number of sleepless nights, but it has also provided me living income over the decades, for which I am grateful.