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Google delays Chrome’s blocking of tracking cookies late to 2023

The Alphabet Inc company said that the Google’s Chrome web browser will not fully block tracking cookies. This is until late 2023, delaying by nearly two years a move that has drawn antitrust concerns from competitors and regulators.

Google wanted to bar reams of ad-personalization companies. So that they won’t gather user’s browsing interests through cookies. This is from January 2022. But there is an accusation that the world’s biggest online ads seller by revenue is using improved privacy. This is as a pretense to gain more market share. Shares were up 0.5% for Alphabet. But it soared for companies such as Trade desk, PubMatic, Criteo etc., which had been scrambling to reduce reliance on cookies.

Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) came to an agreement after an investigation this month, with Google to oversee the Chrome changes. And also, Google’s new timeline is in line with this agreement. Vinay Goel, a privacy engineering director for Chrome, wrote in a blog post that we need to move at a responsible pace. This will allow sufficient time for public discussion on the right solutions and for publishers and the advertising industry to migrate their services. The CMA said that it was discussing on whether to accept Google’s commitments. Hence, in that context they have also been informed of the proposed changes to the timeline. A spokesperson stated that if the commitments are accepted, they become legally binding. This promotes competition in digital markets, thus helping to protect the ability of online publishers. So that money can be raised through advertising and user’s privacy can also be safeguarded.

Chrome and cookies were investigated by the US Department of Justice and the European Union’s competition commission. On technologies, Google is working with the ad industry. This could replace the tracking capabilities of cookies while better protecting online privacy. By late next year, they are aiming to choose new techniques, do final testing and then gradually phase out tracking cookies starting mid-2023 if the CMA signs off. Apple Inc’s Safari browser has also pursued similar changes. But Chrome is used far more widely in the United States and Europe.

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