Not that serious. In fact, Apple just canceled Facebook’s business.DevelopmentQualification. Facebook's normal app distribution in iOS will not be affected, ordinary users can still beiPhonewithiPadDownload social apps like Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and more.
What does that mean in the end? Facebook can't release its apps for internal employees on the iOS platform, including both beta versions of Facebook's social matrix's many new feature services, as well as service apps for Facebook employees, such as the Facebook employee's shuttle app and lunch app. .
Does this move have a big impact on Facebook? Still quite big. Aside from the employee life service, many of Facebook's new features were originally tested through employee applications. Now, after being blocked by Apple, the internal testing of iOS applications has become a big problem. Of course, the Android platform will not be affected. However, even if Facebook encourages employees to use Android phones, iOS is also the most valued user base of Facebook.
Why should Apple slap on Facebook? Apple’s reason for blocking is that Facebook abuses Apple’s enterprise developer program, paying to attract ordinary users to download and install VPN applications for employee internal testing, and illegally collecting users’ large amounts of private data, which is a serious violation of Apple’s developer agreement. "Any developer that distributes an application to consumers through enterprise developer permissions will be revoked. This is to protect users and data."
What is it? This controversial VPN profile application is called "Facebook Research." After the user downloads and clicks on the trust, the app can gain access to a wide range of mobile phones, collecting almost all of the user's data, including privacy data such as applications, geography, chat history, Internet browsing and mobile phone usage.
The matter was exposed by the US tech media Techcrunch. Facebook has been advertising on Instagram since 2016, in the name of paying for social media research, attracting 13-35 year old users to participate in their own research projects, paying $20 a month and an additional $20 per person promotion bonus. , they are attracted to download and install and continue to use Facebook's such private data analytics applications (including iOS and Android apps). Facebook even asks users to take a screenshot of their Amazon order purchase record. About 5% of these users are minors.
In other words, Facebook is paying in exchange for user data to sell its own data for Facebook's business analysis. This is Project Atlas, a beta project for Facebook to investigate future business trends. Obviously, for Facebook, the value of these complete and detailed personal smartphone usage data far exceeds $20 per month, so that they are willing to risk being banned by Apple.
Originally Facebook was promoting such projects publicly. But last June, Apple blocked Facebook's Onavo Protect, a similar app that collects user data. Facebook bought the startup for $120 million in 2014. Onavo is still available for download in the Google Store, with more than 10 million downloads.
After being removed from the Apple App Store, Facebook did not completely die, but took advantage of the enterprise developer mechanism, bypassing the Apple App Store, continuing to launch such apps from employee beta channels, and paying to attract ordinary users (including adults and Children) Download the app and continue to collect and analyze the user's mobile Internet behavior. In fact, Facebook Research can be seen as another version of Onavo.
After being exposed by the media, Apple immediately withdrew Facebook's corporate developer qualification. Ironically, after Apple took action, Facebook issued a statement saying that the company had closed the iOS version of the Research project, pretending to have cancelled the application.
In the past year, Facebook has been repeatedly exposed to a number of scandals involving user data, the most influential of which was the "Cambridge Analytical Inc." scandal during the 2016 US election. A big data marketing company took advantage of Facebook's management vulnerabilities and lack of systems a few years ago, and illegally obtained tens of millions of users' personal data for accurate political advertising. Since Cambridge Analytical's service customer during the 16-year election was Trump, the later US President, Trus, this incident triggered the attention of mainstream American media and liberals.
Apple CEO Cook has repeatedly publicly criticized Facebook for collecting and selling user privacy data for profit. After criticizing Facebook, Cook always mentioned Apple's corporate philosophy of highly valued user privacy, and even publicly called on regulators to take measures to strengthen the management and punishment of collecting user data. Zuckerberg replied that Cook did not understand Facebook's business model. Facebook offered services for free, instead of selling expensive products like Apple.
However, despite Facebook's series of negative blows, it did not affect Facebook's performance. Facebook's earnings report released today showed that in the fourth quarter of last year, Facebook's revenue was US$16.914 billion, up 30% year-on-year; net profit was US$6.882 billion, up 61% year-on-year. Facebook's monthly users reached 2.32 billion, up 9% year-on-year; daily users reached 1.52 billion, up 9% year-on-year. Moreover, up to 93% of Facebook's revenue comes from mobile advertising.
This brilliant earnings report boosted Facebook's share price by 11.5%. Precisely placed social ads are the cornerstone of Facebook's business model, and the social graph generated by users' big data is the asset that Facebook relies on for profit. Although the Facebook Reseach project was blocked by Apple, social giant Facebook will never give up on the thirst for user data.
Sina Technology Zheng Jun from Silicon Valley, USA