Google has finally added the App Store privacy labels to its Gmail app for iOS devices – more than a month after it was noticed for delaying updates to its apps on the Apple platform for not comply with the new confidentiality regime. Instead of updating to a new version, the search giant silently added privacy labels to the Gmail app. This means that you won’t get any new features or bug fixes, but some details about how Gmail collects your data will be shown.
As initially reported by MacRumors, Gmail for iOS on the App Store has started showing privacy labels, suggesting what all data is taken from you and shared through the app. The privacy labels attached to Gmail’s listing indicate that the app shares your approximate location and user ID with advertisers. It also collects information about your interaction with the advertisements.
Gmail also collects certain data for analysis, in accordance with privacy labels on the App Store. This data includes your email address, content such as photos and video and audio data, search history, and your location information. The app is also suggested to collect your contact details and search history, as well as how you interact with them to provide a personalized experience. Additionally, privacy labels suggest that Gmail collects information such as your location, name, and contacts for the functionality of the app.
It’s important to point out that Gmail isn’t the only email client to carry privacy labels indicating user data collection. Other similar apps, including Apple’s Mail, Microsoft Outlook, and Hey, also have similar privacy labels.
The privacy labels available on the App Store that rolled out in December are specifically meant to indicate what data a particular app might collect. However, the labels are based solely on developer self-declaration and are not verified by Apple. The App Store also does not provide clear details on the purpose of data collection and whether it was collected on a regular basis or simply to activate a particular feature.
Some app developers, including WhatsApp, have alleged that the App Store’s privacy labels are anti-competitive and give Apple an unfair advantage. A recent Washington Post report also pointed out that many apps on the App Store displayed fake labels because they had not been verified by the iPhone maker, although it promised to manually review the reports. applications that do not represent their data collection. correctly.
That said, Gmail became the second Google app to receive privacy labels, with the company previously making the same change for its YouTube app. The Gmail app, unlike YouTube, however, hasn’t received a new update. In fact, it received the last update over two months ago.
Besides Gmail and YouTube, other popular Google apps like Chrome, Maps, and Photos have yet to receive privacy labels from the App Store. Google, however, reportedly promised to roll out privacy labels for its iOS apps last month.