Google delays Chrome cookie phase-out to 2024

Daniel Sims

Posts: 595   +21
Staff
Why it matters: Google has long been working on an alternative to cookies that splits the difference between user privacy and advertising revenue. However, the company needs more time before totally replacing third-party cookies in Chrome. Fortunately, public testing for Google's new initiative will start soon.

On Tuesday, Google announced that it's pushing its plans to eliminate third-party cookies in Chrome back by two years, as the feature isn't ready. However, users can start testing that alternative for themselves next month.

Cookies help advertisers track users and deliver personalized ads, but they're unpopular because they can compromise user privacy. European anti-cookie legislation is behind all those consent prompts seen on many websites. In 2020, Google announced work on a solution that would make third-party cookies obsolete, initially hoping to reach that goal in two years. Despite missing that timeline, the company isn't giving up.

Google's Privacy Sandbox aims to create a set of standards to help advertisers deliver personalized ads without revealing users' personal information. One of its components is Trust Tokens, which perform a role similar to cookies but with encryption to hide a user's identity. Privacy Sandbox incorporates many other technologies to keep ads relevant to users while limiting how much advertisers know about them.

These tools appear on Google's updated roadmap for the Privacy Sandbox. By now, all have started pre-launch testing and origin trials. The company set general availability for Q3 2023 and wants to phase out third-party cookies by late 2024. In February, Google revealed plans to bring the system to Android in another two years, falling roughly along the company's timeline for Chrome on desktops.

Chrome 104 stable branch will include the trial for desktop users when it launches in August. About half of Chrome desktop beta users already have it enabled. Android users will get it with Chrome 105 stable at the end of August.

Google's attempt to balance user privacy and the desires of advertisers contrasts with efforts from Apple, Firefox, and Brave to block tracking entirely. Google's business depends on advertising, whereas Apple's doesn't, and Google also thinks hardline blocking pushes advertisers to more covert methods like fingerprinting. With the Privacy Sandbox, the company wants to block fingerprinting while giving advertisers an alternative.

Permalink to story.

 

psycros

Posts: 4,353   +6,385
You can block most fingerprinting methods right now with either certain browsers or addons. Google could do it too, for them but that would be financial suicide.
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,553   +6,004
You can block most fingerprinting methods right now with either certain browsers or addons. Google could do it too, for them but that would be financial suicide.
How much you want to bet this new method of user tracking will be a lot harder to block then Cookies?
 

hk2000

Posts: 179   +102
I'd definitely use Edge first,or go completely without a browser rather than use Chrome! You're either a computer illiterate or an ***** it you choose Chrome over any other browser.

And oh BTW, Firefox just told me that the link in Techspot's email I just tried to follow contains 2 trackers!!!
 

GoldenGoat

Posts: 76   +79
You can block most fingerprinting methods right now with either certain browsers or addons. Google could do it too, for them but that would be financial suicide.

What addons do you recommend?

In my opinion, the Web and Browsers should be rebooted. A standards body should design it and not companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple. The information web browsers give access to to web sites should not be possible without an addon, rather than needing an addon to block it. Fingerprinting should never have been possible in the first place.



 

bviktor

Posts: 973   +1,420
What addons do you recommend?

In my opinion, the Web and Browsers should be rebooted. A standards body should design it and not companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple. The information web browsers give access to to web sites should not be possible without an addon, rather than needing an addon to block it. Fingerprinting should never have been possible in the first place.
Privacy Badger from EFF is a good start. It's good to use, too, you can block/allow individual cookie domains on a per-site basis with the click of a button.

https://privacybadger.org/