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iPhone iOS 16 Changes How Users Interface With Companies

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) will go into effect on January 1, 2023, and requires companies to allow internet users the right to determine how companies use personal data. With more than half of all web traffic and two-fifths of email openings occurring on mobile devices, marketing strategies must be adjusted to accommodate the new regulations, or online marketing campaigns will become less effective for many brands and may limit advertising opportunities for brands that currently rely heavily on the status quo to measure the success of digital campaigns.

Apple recently released its’ latest generation of software for the popular Apple iPhone. Version 16 has created some confusion among users and marketing professionals as Apple continues to give its iPhone users more control over how they interface with companies who want to connect with consumers over mobile devices. Mobile commerce is on track to represent one in ten retail sales by 2025 according to Statista, the leading provider of marketing consumer data. Apple’s iOS 16 will give iPhone users more flexibility in adjusting what they see before unlocking the phone. Popular buy-now, pay-later (BNPL) services like Klarna and Affirm will permit installment payments in Apple Pay, an upgrade that marketers who provide Apple Pay say will help expand the potential customer base.

Changes to the iPhone’s lock screen and more privacy restrictions to ad breaks in video streams that people co-watch in SharePlay promise to be a challenging obstacle for marketers. The feature warns iPhone users when apps ask for an identifier that helps marketers know if digital ads are reaching the target audience. Apps will no longer have access to names that users give to devices to help protect user privacy. Software updates in the control center screen allow users to swipe down to immediately see which apps are receiving geographic location data. While version 16 delivers on Apple’s promise to add a plethora of new features and benefits to loyal users, the new release comes with some unforeseen glitches.

Since the release in late September, users are reporting that they are experiencing an increase in battery drain over previous generations of the software. “It is common for new versions of iOS (and apps) to have glitches, but usually they are found in pre-release testing. If the battery life issue is real, then Apple did not do adequate testing before releasing the update. And that is an issue with their quality control,” said Jack Gold, principal analyst at research firm J. Gold Associates. iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max users have reported a shaking camera problem and other users were experiencing bugs that included a recurring prompt after pasting from the clipboard. After users reported additional bugs and glitches, Apple immediately released iOS 16.0.2 to mitigate the problems.

It is not all unwelcome news for marketers who want to improve customer engagement. iOS Web Push is now permitting marketers to reach mobile users in connection with Safari. Beginning in early 2023, notifications will be supported on the mobile iOS after users are prompted to opt-in for the service. “This update is a big win for brands with websites and Progressive Web Apps (PWAs), which will now be able to reach users with urgent and important messages on iOS devices even when their website isn’t actively being used.”

Are you constantly annoyed by those little CAPTCHA boxes that demand you to work out how many squares contain trucks or streetlights? For Apple users, iOS 16 provides a new method to prove you are not a bot. The new feature will use a Private Access Token, via iCloud, to verify the user to the website or app.

For marketers, the importance of strategic planning in connecting with consumers over the internet through mobile devices will be more important than ever before. Many of the past practices of harvesting and utilizing customers’ personal data to identify and predict consumers’ buying behavior are over. Developing relationships with customers through digital channels will always be critical for brands to build a successful business. Keeping these channels open and accessible for everyone requires marketers to do more to protect mobile internet users’ privacy.