Maybe unlimited cloud storage isn't all it's cracked up to be. That was the message of Apple CEO Tim Cook's speech at a privacy conference where he made some not-so-subtle references to Facebook, Google and other Silicon Valley companies that mine users' personal information to sell to advertisers.
“We believe the customer should be in control of their own information,” Cook said Tuesday during a speech hosted by the Electronic Privacy Information Center, as quoted by TechCrunch. “You might like these so-called free services, but we don't think they're worth having your email, your search history and now even your family photos data-mined and sold off for god knows what advertising purposes. And we think some day customers will see this for what it is.”
Cook didn't name Facebook, Google or any other company but his remarks come as privacy advocates have grown increasingly concerned about Google's new Photo service because of the idea that Google is essentially making money on family memories. Google Photo scours through tens of thousands of photos, identifying faces, creating GIFs and creating maps documenting a customer's route of travel.
Of course Cook might also be on the defensive after reviews have consistently favored Google Photo over Apple's Moments.
“They're gobbling up everything they can learn about you and trying to monetize it,” Cook said. “We think that's wrong. And it's not the kind of company that Apple wants to be."
Cook -- who has made similar comments in the past on Charlie Rose and elsewhere -- also promised Apple would continue incorporating encryption into its gadgets despite pleas from FBI Director James Comey, who asked Congress to introduce a law forcing tech companies to install a surveillance backdoor into their products.