Following a very public outcry from Facebook, Apple has opted to delay its new data tracking permission feature coming with iOS14. The feature will still be available with the update, but will not be enforced until next year.

The new feature will require apps and websites that track data and follow user activity elsewhere to first get user permission. It is a major step forward for Apple’s current philosophy of protecting consumer privacy.

The move didn’t sit well with Facebook, a fellow tech giant with an entirely different philosophy towards user-data collection. In response to Apple’s changes, Facebook claimed that such a feature could significantly impact its own ad business, which relies on collecting user data to serve personalized online ads.

While not specifically mentioning Facebook’s outcry, Apple confirmed the updated timetable in a note Tuesday to developers. It claimed that the delayed timetable was put in place to give developers more time to update their apps to comply with the rule.

“We are committed to ensuring users can choose whether or not they allow an app to track them,” the note read. “To give developers time to make necessary changes, apps will be required to obtain permission to track users starting early next year.”

Facebook specifically took issue with the change, stating that it could have a “severe impact” on its Audience Network service, which allows ads to follow users to different websites and apps.

“Our ability to deliver targeted ads on iOS14 will be limited,” Facebook explained. “As a result, some iOS14 users may not see any ads from Audience Network, while others may still see ads from us, but they’ll be less relevant.”

Apple's share price has doubled since March, taking its market valuation to over $2 trillion, the highest ever seen on Wall Street Apple's share price has doubled since March, taking its market valuation to over $2 trillion, the highest ever seen on Wall Street Photo: AFP / KIMIHIRO HOSHINO